Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and his Tamil Nadu counterpart Edappadi K. Palaniswami are scheduled to meet in Thiruvananthapuram on September 25 to discuss inter-State water issues, primarily the Parambikulam-Aliyar Project (PAP).
The Tamil Nadu delegation is expected to include Power Minister P Thangamani, Municipal Administration and Rural Development Minister S.P. Velumani, Environment Minister K.C. Karuppannan, Deputy Speaker V. Jayaraman, Chief Secretary K. Shanmugam, secretaries and chief engineers.
The meeting is scheduled to be held at Hotel Mascot in the afternoon of September 25, Water Resources Department officials said.
At the meeting between the two States, the focus of discussions will be on the PAP. Kerala has been expressing concern over Tamil Nadu’s approach to the river-water sharing agreement which was signed by the two States on May 29, 1970, with retrospective effect from November, 1958.
For several years now, Kerala has been demanding Tamil Nadu to honour the provisions of the PAP, and stop denying the State its rightful share of water.
Tamil Nadu is expected to take up its demand for the diversion of 2.5 tmc ft of Anamalaiyar river water, which is linked to the Idamalayar project, a senior officer with the Irrigation Department said.
In July this year, Mr. Palaniswami had written to Mr. Vijayan seeking to hold discussions to settle the inter-State water disputes. Although bureaucracy-level discussions on inter-State issues have been occurring regularly between the two States, a meeting at the CM-level is taking place after a long gap.
Water Resources Minister K. Krishnankutty held discussions with senior officers of his department here on Friday as part of the preparations. The Chief Minister is convening a high-level meeting here on Saturday to finalise the State’s strategies ahead of the September 25 meeting.