Today's Paper

Rosaiah takes on CWC chairman

Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: Chief Minister K. Rosaiah strongly repudiated the contention of Central Water Commission (CWC) chairman Arun Kumar Bajaj that the high floods in the Krishna would have been averted had the State government acted upon the forecasts of inflows into the river issued by the Commission.

The forecasts referred to by the CWC chairman were restricted to the inflows into the Tungabhadra at Mantralayam whereas the Krishna received a huge flood from other tributaries too – the Bhima and the Hundri, Mr. Rosaiah said at a press conference here on Tuesday when he took on Mr. Bajaj, who has given a spate of media interviews faulting the government.

Also, the Tungabhadra crossed the 318-metre mark at Mantralayam whereas the CWC had forecast that the water level would touch 315 metres.

The actual inflows always deviated from CWC’s forecasts even in respect of the inflows received at Srisailam.

The Chief Minister pointed out that CWC officials were present in the flood control room when the State government’s engineers regulated inflows and outflows in Srisailam, Nagarjunasagar and Prakasam Barrage.

They would have expressed objections, if any, if the engineers had differed with them on flood management.

“This is the truth, whatever Mr. Bajaj says. We will continue to seek the CWC’s guidance. Let there not be any controversy over this matter. This is not a Centre-State dispute,” Mr. Rosaiah said.

He denied reports that his government had constituted a committee of experts to study the high floods and suggest ways to tackle them in future by increasing the capacities of the reservoirs as the CWC was equipped for handling the task.

Asked to react to reports that his convoy was stoned during his visit to the flood-affected areas, the Chief Minister said perhaps he was not the target.

A stone hit the first vehicle in the convoy which was occupied by journalists.

The grouse of these people was that the convoy did not stop at their place.

Mr. Rosaiah said it was quite natural for those who had suffered in the floods to react angrily when someone, especially a Chief Minister, visited them.

Instead of turning angry at them, he sympathised with them and was doing his best to mitigate their suffering.

Crest-gates closed

Meanwhile, with the floods in the Krishna river having receded, Irrigation authorities closed all the 12 crest-gates of Srisailam and all 26 gates of Nagarjunasagar to impound water in the reservoirs of the two dams.

Now, only a meagre inflow of about 60,000 cusecs is flowing into Srisailam reservoir from upper reaches of the Krishna and other sources. Normalcy returned at Prakasam Barrage at Vijayawada too, with the pond level falling to 12 ft level.