ANDHRA PRADESH

TDP MLA faults State on irrigation projects

Staff Reporter

CUDDAPAH: Congress leaders lacked rational replies on technical aspects pertaining to irrigation project works and hence resorting to personal slander on Telugu Desam Party leaders, the TDP MLA of Choppadandi and retired Chief Engineer, Sana Maruthi, alleged on Saturday.

Addressing a press conference here, he asserted that lack of statutory clearances, non-availability of external aid and tardy land acquisition for irrigation projects estimated to cost Rs. 46,000 crores, taken up ambitiously by the Government, resulted in their tardy progress. Though outlays made for projects envisaged irrigation of 1.14 lakh acres in 2004-05, hardly 5,000 acres could be provided irrigation, he maintained.

EPC system

Regarding `Jalayagnam', Mr. Maruthi noted that EPC system was never used in underground works.

The system was adopted internationally in large complex works, such as lift-irrigation, pumping designs, pipeline laying, structural and mechanical works.

It was introduced in Devadula lift irrigation scheme during the TDP rule, but the present Government made it a pre-qualification to benefit a set of contractors, who formed a syndicate, he alleged.

`Works tardy'

The Government's initial enthusiasm in finalising tenders for irrigation projects was lacking in execution of works, the TDP legislator alleged. Telugu Desam was not obstructing irrigation projects, but exposing the rampant `corruption, irregularities and favouritism', he alleged.

Retired engineers were being engaged in the Quality Control Department, as per the choice of contractors and irrigation projects would only be completed if engineers approved whopping bills as being demanded by contractors, he alleged.

Though Rs. 570 crores was allotted for Telugu Ganga works, hardly Rs. 30 crores had been spent so far this year, he alleged.

A debate on Telugu Ganga project was slated at Sri Kalahasti on Sunday, he said.

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