Staff Correspondent

`Serious efforts not being made to improve irrigation facilities'

RAICHUR: The Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha (KRRS) has urged the Government to take up all pending and ongoing projects in the Krishna basin on a war footing and develop irrigation facilities in the drought-prone areas of the district.

Vice-president of the sangha Chamrasa Malipatil said here on Tuesday that the Government was not making serious efforts to improve irrigation facilities in the Krishna basin areas as it was being done in the case of projects taken up in the Cauvery basin.

He said the Tungabhadra Left Bank Canal (TLBC) and the Narayanaura Right Bank Canal (NRBC), if properly maintained, had the potential to irrigate more than 14 lakh acres annually in all four taluks of the district. But this was not happening.

Mr. Malipatil said that although the TLBC had the potential to irrigate about six lakh acres annually in Sindhanur, Manvi and Raichur taluks, its waters were not reaching the tail-end regions in these taluks owing to frequent breaches in the canal and poor maintenance.

The Government had only initiated temporary measures to repair the canal but had failed to take up a comprehensive plan for its development, he said. Mr. Malipatil said the Government had also neglected NRBC projects. He demanded that action be taken to strengthen the weak sections of the NRBC and ensure that water reached the tail-end regions.

He said that a KRRS delegation, which had attended an all-party meeting called by the Government to discuss the Cauvery issue, had met Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and Water Resources Minister K.S. Eshwarappa and submitted a detailed report to them on the plight of farmers in the district.