Farmers pinned their hopes on inflows from the tributaries downstream the Nagarjunasagar Project

With the canals remaining partially closed for the Krishna Delta Modernisation works which are still in progress, the Vijayawada Irrigation Circle authorities were forced to release water from the Prakasam Barrage into the river on Monday. With the monsoon still inactive over the Krishna delta farmers pinned their hopes on inflows received from the tributaries of Krishna downstream the Nagarjuna Sagar Project.

Though the farmers need water for raising seed beds the Irrigation department is unable to provide them any because of the works in progress.

As per the regular practise water should be released on June 15. But the release was postponed by a month primarily because of the “long closure” works in progress in some sections. The second reason for the postponement is the lack of water in the reservoirs on Krishna river. Ironically, Godavari river is already in spate and hundreds of tmcft of water are bound to be released into the Bay of Bengal.

The Vijayawada Irrigation Circle has sent a memo to all executive engineers to prepare the irrigation network including the drains for release of water in July.

Chairman of the Andhra Pradesh Rythanga Samakya and former Drainage Board member Yerneni Nagendranath said there was enough water in the Nagarjuna Sagar Project for raising of seed beds even today. Releasing water into the river at a crucial time was “criminal waste”, but there was no alternative because of the works in progress. The government had to take a decision in principal to release water as per the requirement of the farmers. The High Court stay on the release of water from Srisailam and NSP had already been vacated. The court ordered the formation of a committee to advice the department on when to release water, Mr. Nagendranath said.

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