Special Correspondent

Irrigation Advisory Board meet seeks relaxation in norms

Tenders filed by contractors for only eight of 14 packages

Masula MLA seeks repairs to under tunnel on Bandar Canal

MACHILIPATNAM: The Vijayawada Irrigation Circle authorities have been asked to seek permission from the State Government to break up packages of tenders called for modernisation of Krishna delta irrigation network, for which there was no response from contractors.

Krishna District Collector Shailaja Ramaiyer and elected representatives of the district discussed ways and means of speeding up the execution of the delta modernisation works at the district Irrigation Advisory Board (IAB) meet here on Monday, and asked Vijayawada Irrigation Circle Superintending Engineer Tatineni Sivaji to seek permission to reduce the size of the packages and even relax the norms for awarding works to contractors.

Mr. Sivaji, who submitted a report to the meeting, gave details of the different packages for modernisation of the delta network and the poor response to tender bids from contractors.

He said 20 packages worth Rs. 2,180 crores were announced under the delta modernisation programme, but the Irrigation & Command Area Development (I&CAD) Department was associated with only 14 packages worth Rs. 1,400 crores. Of the 14 packages, contractors filed tenders for only 8 packages. No tenders were filed for five packages in the drainage division.

The yields were good during Kharif and Rabi because of good rains. The farmers in the delta area were supplied 87 tmc ft during Kharif and 49 tmc ft in Rabi through the network of canals in Krishna district.

Kaikaluru MLA Yerneni Rajaramchander said that the earthwork, even in the packages for which there was no response, should somehow be completed, so that water could be pushed to tailend areas at least next year.

Minister for Rural Water Supply Pinnamaneni Venkateswara Rao said crop was lost in some areas where water hyacinth blocked the flow of water into canals. He asked the Irrigation authorities to take immediate action.

Machilipatnam MLA Perni Venkataramaiah (Nani) said that the under-tunnel on Bandar Canal near Inampudi was damaged extensively and needed immediate repairs.