Telangana Finance Minister Etala Rajender announced ₹ 377.35 crore for the Musi Riverfront Development plan for the year 2017-18. This fresh infusion of funds is expected to help clean up the river which has been reduced to a sewer that carries the filth of the city and dumps it into the Krishna. The budget, however, makes no provision for Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation’s request for ₹ 300 crore for construction of drains in GHMC area.
“We need a long-term plan of perhaps 8-10 years with an outlay of at least ₹ 1,000 crore to ₹ 1,500 crore. But it is a good beginning we can try to ensure that only clean water flows into the river and there is no dumping of solid waste in catchment area. Another big problem that this money can tackle is removing encroachments on the Musi river bed,” said M. Veda Kumar of Forum for Better Hyderabad, which has been running a campaign to save Musi.
A series of schemes have been announced by different governments earlier to change the status of Musi from a sewer into a river, but to no avail. The National River Conservation Directorate had sanctioned ₹ 335.65 crore and ₹ 336.84 crore was spent by September 30, 2016 including the State’s share of money.