Andhra Pradesh, Telangana on collision course over Krishna water projects

V Rishi Kumar Hyderabad | Updated on June 20, 2021

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao. File photo   -  Nagara Gopal@thehindu

Telangana Government has decided to construct several projects on Krishna

Telangana and Andhra Pradesh seem set for yet another collision course over the construction of new irrigation projects on the Krishna river.

While raising concerns about Andhra Pradesh taking up new projects, the Telangana’s Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao - during Saturday Cabinet - had chalked out a plan to protect the State’s rights over the Krishna waters. This included taking up several new projects and raising the matter with the Centre and in Courts.

State decided to submit memoranda to Prime Minister and Union Jalashakti Minister to stop these illegal projects in Andhra Pradesh and to expose their unjust exploitation of water, by taking up the matter in the Courts, in the public and raise the matter in the Parliament during the coming Monsoon Session.

Telangana has resented Andhra Pradesh government’s illegal construction of Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme and Rajoli Banda Diversion Scheme right canal and has already approached the National Green Tribunal and the Supreme Court.

Though the Brajesh Kumar Tribunal was constituted 17 years and Telangana state was formed over seven years ago, the statutory share of Telangana State in the Krishna waters had not been fixed and allocated. Hence, the State had requested the Centre to constitute a Tribunal under the Interstate Water Disputes Act of 1956.

The Jal Shakti Minister has during the second Apex Council meeting on Oct 6, 2020 has assured that if Telangana withdraws its cases in the Supreme Court, the decision to constitute a Tribunal can be arrived at. On this assurance, the State government had withdrawn its cases in the SC.

Condemning the Andhra Pradesh government for not paying heed to the instructions given by the NGT and the Centre, the Telangana Government has decided to construct several projects on the Krishnar river. These include:

1. The Jogulamba Barrage: They will also take 60-70 TMC of floodwater through pipeline and lift the same to Edula Reservoir of the Palamuru Rangareddy Lift Irrigation Scheme. This would fulfil the needs of Palamuru Kaluwakurty Ayucut.

2. Constructing the Pulichintala Left Canal and supply water to 2 lakh acres in Nalgonda and Suryapet districts.

3. Constructing another reservoir from Sunkesula reservoir and supplying water to one lakh acres of land in Nadigadda.

4. Constructing a flood flow canal at Kusumarthi village in Krishna Mandalm, where Krishna’s tributary Bhima enters the State.

5. Increasing the storage capacity of Reservoirs under Kaluwakurty Lift Irrigation Scheme by another 20 TMC.

6. Setting up a Lift at Nagarjuna Sagar Tail pond and supplying water for irrigation and drinking water purposes for 2 Lakh acres under the Nagarjuna Sagar project.

The State Cabinet has instructed the Irrigation department to conduct surveys and prepare detailed project reports for these initiatives.

To harness the hydel power during the monsoon season, the State has instructed the electricity department to generate Hydel power plants on Krishna and Godavari rivers supply power to Kaleswaram, Devadula and other lift irrigation schemes. Both these power plants will have combined capacity of 2375 MWs.

Published on June 20, 2021

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