New Delhi, Jan 14: Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah on Sunday condemned Goa Water Resource Minister Vinod Palienkar for insulting and abusing Kannadigas. Taking to micro-blogging site Twitter, Siddaramaiah said that the abusive words used against the Kannada people are reprehensible. However, he made it clear that the southern state and its people do not hold any grudge against the Goans.
“The abusive words used against Kannadigas by BJP’s Irrigation Minister from Goa are reprehensible to say the least. However, we hold no grudge against the people of Goa. We will continue to strive to secure drinking water from Mahadayi for our people,” Siddaramaiah tweeted.
Earlier on Saturday, Goa Water Resource Minister Vinod Palienkar abused Kannadigas and called them ‘harami’ (illegitimate-born). However, later he said that the abuse was uttered in the spur of the moment and requested the media to expunge the abusive word.
Briefing reporters shortly after he visited the water diversion site to Kankumbi region in north Karnataka, he also said that the neighbouring state was indulging in petty politics, while also underplaying the letter written by Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar to Karnataka BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa, where he promised to discuss sharing of drinking water on humanitarian grounds.
“I went with a team of Water Resource department officials to the site and saw that the work on the head regulator was on and the flow of water which comes to Goa was being stopped and diverted towards Karnataka. The photographs are clear. I have spoken to the Chief Minister and have given him the whole report,” Palienkar had said.
He also said, that he had taken police personnel along with him for protection during his visit to site. “They are harami people. They can do anything.”
“I told reporters in Karnataka that their government is doing a dirty thing, by violating court orders. Karnataka is trying to destroy Goa’s identity by diverting the Mahadayi water. We will not let them succeed. Our North Goa Collector has written a strong letter to her Belgaum counterpart asking to stop all construction works going on in contravention of the orders of the tribunal as well as the Supreme Court,” Palienkar had said.
Goa, Karnataka and Maharashtra are currently involved in a dispute in the tribunal over controversial Kalsa-Bhandura dam project across Mahadayi river, through which Karnataka aims to divert water from the Mahadayi basin to nearby basin on the Malaprabha river.
Mahadayi, also known as the Mandovi river, is considered as a lifeline in the northern parts of the coastal state. It originates in Karnataka and meets the Arabian Sea in Panaji in Goa, while briefly flowing through Maharashtra.
The river course is 28.8 km in Karnataka, and over 50 km in Goa.
(With inputs from agencies)