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Pennaiyar River Dispute

Supreme Court Deadline for Inter-State Water Dispute Tribunal over Pennaiyar River Expires

The Supreme Court’s deadline for the formation of an Inter-State River Water Dispute Tribunal to resolve the disagreement over the Pennaiyar River has elapsed, as negotiations have failed to reach a resolution. The Pennaiyar River, also known as Thenpannai, is the second-largest interstate East flowing river basin among the 12 basins lying between Pennar and Cauvery basins. The river flows through Karnataka and Tamil Nadu and empties into the Bay of Bengal. The Inter-State River Water Disputes Act, 1956, allows for the resolution of water disputes through a Tribunal, and its decisions are final and binding, with the same force as an order or decree of the Supreme Court, after its publication in the official gazette of the central government.

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Inter-State Water Disputes: Role of Legislation and Water Disputes Tribunal

The legislation enables the Centre to regulate and develop inter-state rivers and river valleys and to declare such regulation and development under the control of the Union by law. When a request is received from any state government in respect of a water dispute, and the Central Government is of the opinion that the dispute cannot be resolved through negotiations, the Central Government must establish a Water Disputes Tribunal within a year. The Tribunal’s decisions are binding on all parties, and the implementation of the scheme is mandatory, ensuring a fair and just resolution of inter-state water disputes.

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