State urged to move apex court seeking cancellation of the award
The Justice Brijesh Kumar Tribunal’s award on Krishna water dispute would also have an adverse impact on north coastal Andhra apart from making Krishna delta dry, said Uttarandhra Rakshana Vedika and the Forum for Action Research and Analysis (FERPA).
The tribunal allowed Karnataka to store water up to 524.5 meters in Almatti dam which in effect will see little water trickling down to Andhra Pradesh.
In such a situation more quantity of water than the 80 tmc would be diverted to the Krishna from the Godavari from the Polavaram project’s right canal to save the crops in the Krishna delta.
The diversion of more water from the Godavari to the Krishna would affect the water supply to the crops in Visakhapatnam district, industries and drinking water needs, since this area is on the tail end of the Polavaram left canal.
Convenor of FERPA R.V. Rama Rao, president of URV S. Shivasankar and retired chief engineers S. Satyanarayana, B.B. Tammiraju and Brahmanayya strongly criticised the Brijesh Kumar Tribunal award and demanded the State government to immediately move the Supreme Court seeking total cancellation of the award as he deviated from the fundamental principles like not taking into account the 75 per cent dependability prescribed by the government and to which it committed in the Lok Sabha (which was accepted by the earlier committee headed by Justice Bachawat), and considering 65 per cent dependability; distributing surplus waters to the upstream States and allowing Karnataka to raise water storage level at Almatti against the Supreme Court direction.
To save the Krishna delta and the Ayacut under Nagarjuna Sagar the State government must immediately complete the Pulichintala project to store 45 tmc of water to ensure early release of water to the Krishna delta during transplantation period of June-July; completing Polavaram project and the Dummugudem-Nagarjuna Sagar tail pond to divert 160 tmc of water for the Ayacut under Nagarjuna Sagar.
The solution for north Andhra area was to complete the Janjhavathi and Vamsadhara II projects along with Polavaram.
The Uttarandhra Srujala Sravanthi project, an extension of the Polavaram project, must be completed to provide irrigate 8 lakh acres in Uttarandhra and to meet the needs of Visakhapatnam city.
“Polavaram, Dummugudem tail pond and Uttarandhra Srujala Sravanthi should be taken up as integrated national project to solve all the issues. An irrigation development board for north coastal Andhra must also be formed to clear all disputes with Odisha on the project across Vamsadhara, Janjhavathi and other rivers and to complete them”, they said.
They also pointed out that even Bachawat Tribunal had done injustice to AP by allotting very little water and the Srikrishna Commission pointed out this and also observed that the State would have received more water if it argued its case well using all Sections of the Andhra Formation Act. They were critical of the politicians not putting forth the State’s case well.