No let-up in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana river water issues

V Rishi Kumar Hyderabad | Updated on May 19, 2020

File photo of the Godavari river flowing into Krishna   -  The Hindu

Andhra Pradesh and Telangana continue to make claims and counter-claims over sharing of Krishna and Godavari river waters, and there seems to be no end to this ongoing concern of both the States.

After recent allegations made by the Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao that Andhra Pradesh was constructing new projects on the Krishna at Srisailam, violating water tribunal norms, the latter alleged that Telangana has constructed a number of projects in gross violation of conditions on the water utilisation.

The issue has flared up again, with the AP government writing to the Godavari River Management Board about violations by Telangana in constructing several lift irrigation projects and linking them to the mega Kaleswaram lift irrigation scheme.

Aditya Nath Das, AP’s Special Chief Secretary, Irrigation, in separate letters to the Krishna River Management Board and the Godavari River Management Board, urged them to stop Telangana from executing various projects on these two rivers as they would impact the water utilisation as per approvals.

‘No violation’

AP has raised the issue with both the Krishna and Godavari tribunals, contending that Telangana has been utilising the waters from these two rivers in violation of the AP State Reorganisation Act. While AP contended that Telangana has been tapping about 450 TMC ft of Godavari water illegally, late last evening, The Telangana Chief Minister asserted that there was no violation in water utilisation and the surplus water was being harnessed.

In fact, he said that the AP government was wrongfully utilising the Krishna’s water for the Rayalaseema region. The AP government has raised concerns about Telangana violating various river-related pacts made for water utilisation by construction of several projects without securing approvals.

Responding to the letters from AP, KCR said: “We have a clear understanding over the State’s rights on water resources in the Krishna and Godavari basins.”

He further made it clear the State was constructing projects within the allocations made in the undivided AP, and the neighbouring State has to follow the provisions.

KCR said Telangana plans seek allocation of 650 TMC ft Godavari water surplus in addition to the 950 TMC ft allocated for drinking water, irrigation and other needs, and also made it clear that Telangana was working with AP and had no disputes barring the issue of utilisation of Krishna water.

Published on May 19, 2020

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