Inter-State River Water Disputes (Amendment) Bill, 2017 seeks to streamline the adjudication of inter-state river water disputes.
On Tuesday, Government introduced a Bill in Lok Sabha, seeking to set up a single permanent tribunal to resolve the inter-state river water sharing disputes expeditiously.
Instead of having multiple tribunals, Bill which has been introduced by water resources minister Uma Bharti despite opposition from Biju Janata Dal (BJD), makes provision of a single permanent tribunal with multiple benches.
Once proposed legislation is enacted, single permanent tribunal known as Inter-State River Water Disputes Tribunal will subsume all existing tribunals including those on Cauvery, Mahadayi/ Mandovi, Krishna, Vansadhara and Ravi and Beas rivers.
Bill proposes to introduce a mechanism to resolve water dispute amicably by negotiations through a ‘Dispute Resolution Committee’ (DRC) before such dispute is referred to Tribunal.
Committee will be set up by the Central Government consisting of experts from the relevant fields.
In case of any dispute, Centre will first set up DRC. Committee will try to resolve the water dispute through negotiations within a period of one year which may extended to period of six months.
The water dispute will then be referred to the Tribunal if it is not settled by negotiations.
Bharti, however, stated that Centre was very much within its rights to introduce such Bill under Article 262 of the Constitution and assured the House that proposed legislation was needed to resolve any dispute expeditiously.