Andhra Pradesh

No new projects taken up on Godavari, asserts Telangana

The Telangana government on Friday informed the Godavari River Management Board (GRMB) that it has not taken up any new irrigation projects on the Godavari river. All projects grounded on the river within the State were conceived in the combined Andhra Pradesh. The stand of Telangana was made clear at a meeting of GRMB held in the backdrop of Andhra Pradesh government expressing concern last month that Telangana was executing nine new projects without furnishing the DPRs to the board and taking the approval of the apex council headed by the Union Minister for Water Resources.

Therefore, the board, headed by J. Chandrasekhar Iyer, set a deadline of June 10 for Telangana and Andhra Pradesh governments to submit detailed project reports (DPRs) of irrigation projects constructed by the two States on the river. Both States were also asked to furnish agenda items for the apex council meeting immediately. The Chief Ministers of the two States were members of the council.

AP letter

The AP government had written a letter to GRMB that construction of several barrages without detailed studies regarding negative impact on the availability of water for the lower riparian States was in violation of AP Reorganisation Act as per Godavari Water Disputes Tribunal Award. Besides citing nine new projects, the AP government also informed GRMB that it learnt about Telangana enhancing the utilisation under the Kaleswaram lift irrigation scheme from 225 tmcft to 450 tmcft and Sita Rama lift-irrigation scheme from 70 tmcft to 100 tmcft.

The nine projects highlighted by AP are: Kaleswaram lift-irrigation scheme, Godavari lift-irrigation scheme phase - III, Sita Rama lift irrigation scheme, Tupakulagudem, Telangana drinking water supply project, barrages on lower Penganga river at Rajupet (Bhimkund), Chanakha - Korta and Pimparad - Parsoda and Ramappa lake to Pakhal lake diversion.

The AP government had also taken up with GRMB the utilisation of water under existing, ongoing, future and new projects by both States on the Godavari. There was hardly any water for projects of the two States with 75% dependability.

Sources said that Principal Secretary, Irrigation, of Telangana Rajat Kumar referred to a provision of the Godavari water disputes tribunal which allowed a State to divert its allocated water anywhere within its territory. Therefore, it was diverting water wherever there was a requirement to tap its quota. He recalled in this context that Sriramsagar and Nizamsagar projects were entitled to 240 tmcft but they never got 60 tmcft. So, areas served by the two projects were supplemented.

Later, Mr. Rajat Kumar told media persons that the State was entitled to use 967.14 tmcft water as per the allocation by the tribunal and the same was approved by the government of N. Kiran Kumar Reddy in erstwhile State. The effort of Telangana was to tap its entitlement fully.

He wondered how DPR was insisted by AP for Kaleswaram as the Centre had issued a letter confirming it as an old project.

A release later said it was decided to constitute a committee for identification of suitable sites at all inter-State border points for installation of telemetry stations in the Godavari basin.

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Printable version | Aug 15, 2020 10:18:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/no-new-projects-taken-up-on-godavari-ts/article31761841.ece

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