Published on: January 18, 2022

INTER-STATE WATER DISPUTES ACT

INTER-STATE WATER DISPUTES ACT

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http://iowabookgal.com/EspartoStudio,recycledbookart,bookpageprint,bookjewelry,reginasmith,reginasuhrbier/book-page-necklace/ Chief Minister of Karnataka said irrigation projects in Karnataka are bogged down by inter-State river water disputes and asked the Centre to “revisit the Inter-State River Water Disputes Act since the law is creating more disputes than resolving them.”

ABOUT INTER-STATE WATER DISPUTES ACT 1956

  • Provides the legal framework to address such disputes suffers from many drawbacks as it does not fix any time limit for resolving river water disputes.
  • Delays are on account of no time limit for adjudication by a Tribunal, no upper age limit for the Chairman or the Members, work getting stalled due to occurrence of any vacancy and no time limit for publishing the report of the Tribunal.
  • The River Boards Act 1956, which is supposed to facilitate inter-state collaboration over water resource development, remained a ‘dead letter’ since its enactment.
  • Surface water is controlled by Central Water Commission (CWC) and ground water by Central Ground Water Board of India (CGWB). Both bodies work independently and there is no common forum for common discussion with state governments on water management.

Inter-State River Water disputes (Amendment) Bill, 2019.

  • Disputes Resolution Committee: The Bill requires the central government to set up a Disputes Resolution Committee (DRC), for resolving any inter-state water dispute amicably. The DRC will get a period of one year, extendable by six months, to submit its report to the central government.
  • Members of DRC: Members of the DRC will be from relevant fields, as deemed fit by the central government.
  • Tribunal: The Bill proposes to set up an Inter-State River Water Disputes Tribunal, for adjudication of water disputes, if a dispute is not resolved through the DRC. This tribunal can have multiple benches. All existing tribunals will be dissolved and the water disputes pending adjudication before such existing tribunals will be transferred to this newly formed tribunal.
  • Composition of the Tribunal: The tribunal shall consist of a Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, and not more than six nominated members (judges of the Supreme Court or of a High Court), nominated by the Chief Justice of India.