TS move to get CWC nod

The Telangana Government is planning to make a strong bid with the help of facts and figures before the Central Water Commission (CWC) for securing hydrological clearances to Kaleshwaram irrigation project, a shoot-off of re-engineering and redesigning of the erstwhile Pranahita-Chevella project.

It is being planned to highlight the reasons that prompted the State to redesign the project taken up in 2008 by the previous Congress government in combined Andhra Pradesh including serious objections over the submergence of large extent of land in neighbouring Maharashtra.

Besides, the Irrigation department is expected to place records in which the CWC itself made remarks on the availability of water in Pranahita river at Tummidihatti and very low storage capacity for a project proposed for lifting 160 TMC ft water.

The CWC has organised a meeting on March 20 in New Delhi after the State submitted the report of the Kaleshwaram project seeking clearances.

New mechanism

As the AP Reorganisation Act 2014 has brought in a new mechanism to oversee issues related to water resources between Telangana and AP by constituting separate boards on Krishna and Godavari waters, the CWC has also invited the Chairman of the Godavari River Management Board (GRMB) for the March 20 meeting for taking its view before considering the clearances.

The Andhra Pradesh Government has written to GRMB in the past stating that Kaleshwaram is a new project and needs the river board’s clearance.

However, sources in the Telangana Irrigation department said that they are going to explain to CWC why Pranahita-Chevella project has been redesigned as two separate projects — Pranahita and Kaleshwaram with focus on lesser availability of water at Tummidihatti and abundant availability of water in Godavari after the confluence of Pranahita and Indravati rivers with it.

Further, Telangana Government is likely to explain the reasons for escalation of the project cost from ₹38,500 crore for Pranahita-Chevella estimated in 2008 to over ₹80,000 crore as the storage capacity in the redesigned projects would go up from 16.43 TMC ft to 147.71 TMC ft.

Storage capacity

“Even if the orginal project is executed as it is, the cost will be around ₹ 60,000 crore now”, a senior engineer explained.

The necessity for increasing the storage capacity is expected to be attributed not only to the CWC suggestion in the past, but also the requirement of water to create irrigation potential of 18 lakh acres besides stabilising another 16 lakh acres under Sriramsagar, Nizamsagar and Singur projects being starved of water in the recent years following construction of chain of barrages by upper States, according to sources.

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Printable version | May 12, 2021 6:00:32 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/ts-move-to-get-cwc-nod/article17468725.ece

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