No corruption in Water Grid scheme: KTR

Dismissing allegations of corruption as lacking any ground, Minister for Panchayat Raj K. T. Rama Rao assured utmost transparency in Telangana Drinking Water Supply Project (Water Grid) works.

An online system of ‘Smart Grid’ will be devised for remote monitoring of the project’s progress from a centralised location, Mr. Rao informed, during short discussion on the project in the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday.

Public sector consultancy

The project design was prepared by the Rural Water Supply Department and vetted by WAPCOS, a public sector consultancy, unlike the earlier projects in erstwhile governments which would be awarded on EPC basis right from the design stage, he said.

As against the excess quotations during previous regimes, the contracts for water grid works have been awarded for less than the estimated cost.

Further, the system of mobilisation advances has been done away with, Mr. Rao said during a short discussion on the government’s ambitious Water Grid scheme on Tuesday, to a House virtually devoid of Opposition members.

Time-bound works

Conditions were also set for time-bound completion of works and companies which underwent Corporate Debt Restructuring have been disqualified.

He charged the Andhra Pradesh government with trying to create hurdles to the project by writing to the Krishna River Management Board against it, though Telangana is using only its rightful share.

Elaborating on the project, he said 164 works done as part of the Comprehensive Protected Water Supply scheme (CPWS) will be integrated into the water grid, as also the RWS schemes.

In addition to the existing ones, 50 new water treatment plants, and 1,187 overhead storage reservoirs and ground reservoirs will be built as part of the scheme.

Maintenance of the pipeline network will be the responsibility of the Telangana Drinking Water Supply Corporation up to the village level, while the internal network of the village will be the responsibility of the Drinking Water and Sanitation committees formed as part of ‘Grama Jyothi’ programme, with technical support from RWS. Quality control responsibilities have been handed over to WAPCOS.

Land acquisition

Answering posers about land acquisition, Mr. Rao said 608 acres of government lands, 146 acres of private lands and 63 acres of assigned lands have been acquired. The 1.25-lakh-kilometre pipeline network would cut railway lines at 226 locations, highways at 540 locations, irrigation canals at 674 locations, R&B roads at 3,979 locations and panchayatraj roads at 6715 locations.

Lampooning criticism about absence of detailed project reports, Mr. Rao said financial institutions such as HUDCO and NABARD would not have come forward with loans unless DPRs are submitted.

Details sought

Earlier, ruling party legislators Gangula Kamalakar, Gadari Kishore, Shankar Naik and Dharma Reddy, and MIM legislator Jaffer Hussain praised the initiative and sought details of land acquisition, power bills, supply conditions, and maintenance.

The system of mobilisation advances has been done

away with

K. T. Rama Rao

Minister for Panchayat Raj

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Printable version | May 24, 2020 9:51:01 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/no-corruption-in-water-grid-scheme-ktr/article7732719.ece

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