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Let Nadkarni continue to represent State: Goa

Panjim: Goa Government has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister for Water Resources Nitin Gadkari to reconsider their decision and allow Additional Solicitor General Atmaram Nadkari to defend Goa before Mhadei Water Dispute Tribunal (MWDT).

Speaking to Herald, Water Resources Minister Vinod Palyekar informed that Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar has written to the prime minister, while he has written to Gadkari to reconsider their decision and allow Nadkarni to continue to defend Goa before the Tribunal, as at this stage it is not feasible to appoint a new senior Counsel to represent the State.

“Nadkarni has been defending Goa before the Tribunal since 2012 and he is very well versed with the matter,” he said.

Earlier in October, Gadkari in a communiqué to the chief minister declined to grant permission to Nadkarni to appear on behalf of Goa before the MWDT, which is hearing the inter-state water dispute between Goa, Karnataka and Maharashtra.

“It is to state that the Central government is a neutral party to the river water disputes among the party States and therefore, it would be inappropriate for Central government to permit Additional Solicitor General to represent a particular State for inter-state river disputes,” Gadkari had informed.

In 2016 too, Centre had withdrawn Nadkarni permission after Karnataka raised objection. However, Parrikar, who was then defence minister, persuaded Modi and Nadkarni was allowed to continue.

Goa has currently filed a disobedience application against Karnataka before the MWDT for injunction by way of diverting the water of Mhadei River to Malaprabha basin. [H]

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