PANJIM: The crucial hearing before the Mhadei Water Dispute Tribunal (MWDT) will commence from Tuesday, wherein the cross examination of Goa’s witness and hydrology expert Chetan Pandit will continue.
Pandit's cross-examination will be followed by Additional Solicitor General of India Atmaram Nadkarni cross-examining Karnataka’s witness in the contentious water diversion dispute.
“The counsel representing Karnataka before the tribunal will cross-examine Pandit on the hydrology aspect (availability of water in Mhadei). This is the continuation of his previous cross examination. Thereafter, Nadkarni will cross-examine Karnataka’s witness,” said the source.
About six month back, Pandit had criticised the central water commission data on which Karnataka is relying on, to seek diversion of water from the Mhadei basin. The tribunal had permitted Goa to submit evidence on other issues raised by this witness.
In a major relief to Goa after an anxious wait, the Union Ministry for Law has granted permission to Additional Solicitor General Atmaram Nadkarni to appear on behalf of State before the tribunal.
The State had won its first battle when the tribunal declined Karnataka’s plea to divert 7 TMC of water from the Mhadei River, last year in July. Karnataka challenged the order in the Apex Court in August, which was disposed off in January, this year.
However, its main petition before the MWDT to divert 56 TMC of water from Mhadei River, filed in 2006, is still pending.