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Krishna water dispute: CJI recuses himself after AP refuses mediation

New Delhi, August 4 (UNI): Chief Justice NV Ramana on Wednesday recused himself from hearing the dispute between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana over the sharing of river Krishna waters after the Andhra counsel said there was no possibility of resolving the matter through mediation and required adjudication.

Considering the issue raised by Andhra Pradesh’s counsel G Umapathy, the CJI-led bench said, “We cannot force you if you don’t want mediation.”

CJI Ramana then posted the matter before another bench.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing on behalf of the Centre, said the government has no objection if the CJI-led bench heard the plea of Andhra Pradesh.

On Monday, the bench had suggested mediation to both the states for settling their dispute over sharing of the Krishna water, saying it did not want to interfere unnecessarily.

The CJI directed the senior advocates of the two states to decide on the petition to solve through consultations with the two state governments.

Ramana, who was born in the undivided state of Andhra Pradesh, said as he belongs to two Telugu states, he cannot hear the petition.

As per Andhra Pradesh’s plea, Telangana has been indiscriminately drawing water from the Krishna for its power requirements, going against an agreement in 2015, a year after a separate Telangana was carved out of Andhra Pradesh.

It urged the top court to direct the Centre to take control of the common reservoirs of Srisailam, Nagarjunasagar and also Pulichintala and operate the same as per the binding award and regulations.

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