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Thread: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

  1. Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

    Dharwad, June 26 (TRD)- An application filed by an activist under the Right To Information (RTI) Act has exposed may vital information regarding the Cauvery Water Dispute.

    The Founder-President of Puraskara Forum, Krishna Joshi, had asked the Chief Secretary of the State to furnish him all the details regarding the delegations sent to represent the State; the lawyers' fees and the total expenditure incurred by the State Government since the formation of the Cauvery Tribunal.

    Later a complaint was lodged with the Information Commission on Apr. 12 as the officers had failed to furnish the information within the deadline to Joshi.

    In this background, an enquiry was held on June 21 and the Commission has expressed its displeasure as incomplete information was furnished by the Department of Water Resources. It has called for a final enquiry on Sept. 27.

    Lawyers' fee startling

    Out of the many questions raised by Krishna Joshi, the junior officers of the Department of Water Resources, on behalf of the Chief Secretary, have given answers for only two questions. Out of these two, one remains to be incomplete.

    As per the information furnished by these officers, in the period since 1990-91 to 28.2.2007, the 10 Advocate Generals, who appeared be fore the Tribunal, claimed Rs. 1.34 crore as fees.

    During the same period, fees for the 18 lawyers who appeared for the State is Rs. 22.10 crore.

    Out of the 18 lawyers, advocate Anil B. Dewan was paid the highest fee of Rs. 9.66 crore and the lowest in the list was Advocate Ashok Mathur, who was paid Rs. 3,000 only.

    The fee for the famous advocate Fali S. Nariman, who argued for the State since the beginning, was paid Rs. 2.08 crore.

    Similarly the advocates, who represented the State since the formation of the Tribunal, S.S. Javali and Mohan V. Katharki, are paid Rs. 3.77 crore and Rs. 2.75 crore respectively.

    The lawyers' fee paid by the State Government during 2005-06 is Rs. 5.19 crore and this is the highest payment made in a single financial year.

    Visits to Bangalore

    The number of visits made by the advocates to Bangalore to hold discussions are also available. The details are as follows:

    Mohan V. Katharki has visited Bangalore 193 times, S.S. Javali 158 times, Shambhuprasad Singh 138 times, Anil B. Dewan 46 times, Sayyed Naqvi 26 times, Fali S. Nariman 19 times, Brijesh Kalappa 18 times, Ranvir Singh 14 times and Sanjay R. Heggade 7 times.

    "The expenditure incurred on lawyers is startling. In spite of this huge expenditure, I feel the Government has utterly fail0ed in presenting its arguments effectively. My concern is that all the details regarding the dispute be made available to the public," says Krishna Joshi. "I will continue to fight till all the information is available," he declared.

    Having won his case to make the entire proceedings of the Information Commission to be conducted in Kannada, he insists that the Cauvery Tribunal should publish its verdict in Kannada and there should be clarity in the details.

    Star Of Mysore Online

  2. Re: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

    Startling revelation !! That is why after the verdict was pronounced, the lawyers declared victory and scooted !

  3. #3
    C J Karira
    Blog Entries
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    Re: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

    Wow, at least now, Manoj and myself will never ever argue again about advocates being BPL ! LOL
    Please see post No. 10 and 11 in the thread:

  4. Re: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

    Cauvery dispute: TN pays Rs 22.69 crore as advocates fee

    Tamil Nadu has paid Rs 22.69 crore as fee to the advocates who appeared before the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal between 1990 and March 31, 2007, information received through a petiton filed under RTI Act said.

    Disclosing this to media today, educationist T D Naidu who got the information from the government by invoking the provisions under the Right to Information Act, said the government paid another Rs.2.39 crore towards conferences held by the advocates in hotels during the period.

    He said it was shocking to note that the advocates had charged the government for a 'noble cause'. It would have been better if the advocates argued the state's case before the tribunal, free of cost.

    Questioning the rationale behind paying "higher" fee, he said the government advocates were paid Rs.1,000 per day for appearing on behalf of the government in the High Courts and Supreme Courts.

    The amount spent on lawyers fee could have been spent on construction of desalination plants in various parts of the state, he said.

    Claiming that the figures given to him by the government was only a 'small portion' of the money spent, he said the government should come out with a white paper on the amount spent on the tribunal.

    Deccan Herald - Cauvery dispute: TN pays Rs 22.69 crore as advocates fee

  5. Re: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

    A great information, and rightly used RTI.

  6. Re: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !

    finally we have to realise, that disputes, arbitrations, courts are only for protection of the rich and the strong. Media, lawyers and judges are just tools!!

  7. Re: Cauvery row: Lawyers pocket Rs. 22 cr.Result: Big Zero !


    Dharwad, Aug. 5 (SC) - The Water Resources Department has again come out with incomplete information to an important question asked under the Right To Information (RTI) Act regarding the delegations sent to New Delhi on behalf of the State Government during the proceedings of Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT).

    The Founder-President of Dharwad-based Puraskar Organisation, Krishna Joshi, had asked questions regarding the judgement of the Tribunal, fees paid by the Government to advocates, details of the delegations that had been to Delhi and many other important information, under the RTI Act. As the information provided was once again not complete, everybody’s interest is now focussed on the final hearing of the Information Commission to be held on Sept. 27.

    With regard to the Cauvery water dispute, eighteen advocates have argued on behalf of the Government. But the Water Resources Department has so far provided information on only nine advocates who visited Bangalore during 1991-92 till March 2007.There is no mention of details of the remaining nine advocates in the report.

    Travelling and stay
    Even in this report, there are a lot of discrepancies. While the report submitted on 19-6-2007 says that nine advocates from Delhi had visited Bangalore 619 times, the report submitted on July 25 says the advocates visited Bangalore 647 times.

    The travel particulars of the advocates who came to Bangalore from Delhi to discuss about the case and the expenditure on their hotel stay are as follows :

    Fali S.Nariman—17 times (Rs. 9.79 lakh), Anil Dewan— 59 times (Rs. 32.56 lakh), S.S.Javali — 160 times (Rs. 31.68 lakh), Mohan Kataraki- 176 times (Rs. 42.11 lakh), Shambhu Prasad Singh—159 times (Rs. 44.08 lakh), Sanjay Hegde— 9 times (Rs. 4.24 lakh), Syed Naqvi—35 times (Rs. 7.33 lakh), Ranveer Singh— 14 times (Rs. 8.44 lakh) and Brijesh Kalappa- 18 times (Rs.13.58 lakh).

    The total expenditure incurred by the Government on these advocates' visit and hotel stay is Rs. 1,93,81,000. Of this, Rs. 112.75 lakh is towards their travelling expenses and remai-ning Rs. 81.06 lakh towards their hotel stay.

    Advocate General absent
    In 1991, when Cauvery Tribunal gave its interim award, C. Shivappa was the Advocate General of Karnataka . He held the office between 22-10-1990 and 5-8-1991 and appeared before the Tribunal only 10 times out of the total 13.

    "Why was he absent for the remaining 3 hearings? Did the Government obtain a written reply from him in this regard? What was Shivappa’s reply?"

    To all these questions, the Water Resources Department's reply is, "Information not available."

    Not satisfied with the reply, Krishna Joshi wrote a letter to the Public Information Officer of the Department on Tuesday, asking, what reason did Shivappa give for his absence. In all the hearings when he was absent, what were the issues discussed? Joshi has sought the order sheet.

    Government promulgated an Ordinance when the Interim award was announced on 25-6-1991. Since the President had sought the Supreme Court's opinion regarding the validity of the Ordinance, the Court gave its ruling on 22-11-1991.

    Later, on 25-11-1991, State Government filed a review petition. There is a time limit for filing review petition.

    Joshi has also sought explanation regarding the Department's reply which said there was no question of taking action against those responsible for the delay.

    Why there was a delay of 5 months in filing review petition? Was the President’s action, seeking Supreme Court opinion, the cause for the Government’s delay? Did our State's advocates err?, he asked.

    The Department said the summary of the final report of the Cauvery Tribunal was not published in Kannada. As people have already read the reports in the media, there was no proposal to publish the same in Kannada.

    To this Joshi has questioned, “If the general public come to know of these matters through the media, will it rob the Government of its responsibility of providing information? Does it apply to all the orders of the Government?"

    According to the regulations of the Inter-State River Disputes Act of 1956, the decision of the Tribunal was final in all such water disputes. In spite of this, was a written opinion obtained from the State Advocate General about filing an appeal in the Supreme Court? To this, the Department replied that as it is a “special matter”, the information cannot be disclosed. But the petitioner argued that as it is a matter related to the public cause, the Government has a responsibility to provide the information.

    Water Resources Department has also provided incomplete information regarding questions asked about the delegations that were sent to file appeal regarding the water dispute.

    A total of 6 delegations were sent on 23-4-1990, 11-7-1991, 19-7-1991, 5-12-1991, 31-12-1991 and 17-2-1992 to Delhi and the Department has given only the details of the members who were present in the first delegation and has said that it has no information about the members present in the other delegations and the expenses made on them. This has also angered the petitioner who has asked whose responsibility it is to provide answer to questions?

    Krishna Joshi has further asked six questions on the replies provided by the Water Resources Department on July 25. He is hopeful of getting answers to his questions much before the final hearing which is fixed for Sept. 27.

    Krishna Joshi asked the PIO whether the Government prayed the Court to condone the delay of five months to file the revision petition.

    Star Of Mysore Online


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