Nearly 56,000 acres under the Krishna-Eluru canal in WG is dependent on Krishna water for irrigation

The Krishna and Godavari delta areas present a contrasting picture on the kharif operations in the current year. The farmers in the Godavari delta are blessed with the bountiful Godavari river, their counterparts in the Krishna delta are a worried lot over the kharif prospects. The Godavari delta classified into the western, eastern and central deltas, comprises 12 lakh acres while the Krishna delta is endowed with the 13 lakh. Nearly 56,000 acres under the Krishna-Eluru canal in West Godavari district is dependent on the Krishna waters for irrigation.

The impounding of waters in major dams like Almatti in Karnataka and Nagarjuna Sagar within the State upstream cast a shadow over the irrigation prospects in the Krishna delta for the last couple of decades.

Uncertainty over the release of water from the Krishna river triggered protest in the opposition parties. The TDP activists staged a dharna at the apron of the Prakasam barrage a few days ago seeking to release the Krishna water for the kharif operations.

According to Yerneni Nagendranath, president of the Andhra Pradesh Rytanga Samakhya, the Krishna delta under the Prakasam Barrage requires at least 15tmc of water for the farmers to raise seedbeds immediately. Even as 50tmc of water was available in the Nagarjuna Sagar dam, the government was not bothered to take steps to help the Krishna delta farmers, Mr. Nagendranath criticised.

Many farmers in the Krishna delta are eagerly waiting for the river water to flow into the canals, some are venturing to raise seedbeds, depending on the rains in the local catchment area. Water from the Prakasam barrage was released on July 1 in the previous kharif season.

Meanwhile, the scene in the Godavari delta is altogether different. Plenty of water is available in the river on account of heavy rains in the catchment. Srinivas, Executive Engineer of the western delta of the Irrigation Department, said 1 lakh cusecs of water was let into the sea at the Dhavaleswaram Barrage on Sunday while 5,500 cusecs released into the western canals.

With this, the kharif operations got into a full swing in the Godavari delta. The farmers are busy raising the seedbeds all over the western delta.