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Tamil politicians are back at their ususal game of barbarous bluster and brinkmanship. Vaigoplalaswami, the leader of one Dravidian faction has even threatened a blockade of Kerala over the Mullaperyar Dam issue. It appears that with the defeat of the LTTE and the return of nornalcy in Sri Lanka, the Western funded Human Rights activists not withstanding ( I wonder why they do not scream at what the White men are doing in Libya, Pakistan and Afghanistan), Tamil politicians need an issue to whip up the cold, insane frenzy of their electorate. The settlement of the Tamil issue in Sri Lanka has deprived them of one milch cow that like kamadhenu could be relied upon to deliver votes. Now they have latched on to the Mullaperyar Dam issue.
Let me begin by stating certain historical and legal facts which the semi literate Kerala and Tamil politicians ignore. First, Tamil Nadu does not have riparian rights over the waters because the Peryar River was diverted from its natural course and made to flow into Tamil Nadu. So Kerala can rightly claim that Tamil Nadu does not possess riparian rights; for some reason they are not doing so. However, I think that on humanitarian grounds, Tamil Nadu must be given its exixting share of water without too much ado. Keral politicians, instead of driving home the legal and tecnical arguments are like tamil politicians whipping up the frenzy of the mob. I was shocked when a highly educated girl sent me a SMS some time back in which she frantically stated that 4 districts of Kerala, including Kochi, in which she lives, is in imminent danger of innundation. I told her that the collpase of the dam was only a figment of the movie maker's imagianation. I do not know whether she was reassured. I am only saying this to show how much panic the Karala politicians have whipped up.
The 999 year lease agreement signed with the then Madras Government is a legal absurdity. The legal rights of the then Madras Government came from the unequal treaties and sanads signed with princely states and Kertala wille well within its legal rights to claim that with Independence thae treaty lapsed. Unfortunately the legal fagility of the argument of the Government of Tamnil Nadu is not being exploited by Kerala. The legal grounds on which Tamil Nadu stakes its claim over the dam is not consistent with the Constitution of India and its federal structure. Tamil Nadu cannot claim administrative control over a dam located in Kerala territory when the safety of the people livining in the downstream dsictricts lie with Kerala. I ma not particularly fond of Karal and its Communinst and Congress tribe of politicians, but facts must be our concern.
I think the Governemnt of India is caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. The best way to break the logjam would be to renotiate the Treaty of 1885 after a complete tecnical study of the strength of the dam. It is another example of the absurdity of Tamil politicians who claim that for 999 years the dam need not be repaired.
The fun has begun. Let us see how it ends.