New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear on Monday the Karnataka's plea to stay its September 28 order to the state to release 9,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu from the Cauvery river basin.

A bench headed by Justice D K Jain directed listing of the Karnataka's fresh plea for stay of the court's order in the mentioning list of Monday after senior counsel S S Javali, appearing for the state, sought early hearing of the matter.

Karnataka has pleaded that it would be unable to comply with the Apex Court's directive due to the decline in the river's water level as otherwise it would adversely affect its own irrigation and drinking water needs.

A bench of justices Jain and Madan Lokur, while directing release of the water on September 28, had pulled up the Karnataka government for failing to comply with the Prime Minister-headed Cauvery River Authority's (CRA) directive to release 9,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu.

The bench had warned Karnataka that if it failed to comply with the CRA directive, it (the bench) will have to pass appropriate orders.

"This is the order passed by the CRA, headed by the Prime Minister. You don't want to comply with it. We are very sorry for the kind of respect you have for the highest authority. You comply with the directive or we will pass the order," the bench told the counsel appearing for the Karnataka government.

The Apex Court then had directed the state to release 9,000 cusecs of water under the distress sharing formula from September 20 to October 15 and sought its reply within a week.

Irked by the Karnataka's refusal to release the water, Tamil Nadu had urged the Apex Court to direct the Union government to protect its interest invoking Article 355 of the Constitution.

(Agencies)

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