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Polavaram project: Jagan asks Centre to consider revised cost estimate

V Rishi Kumar Hyderabad | Updated on October 26, 2020 Published on October 26, 2020

YS Jagan Mohan Reddy   -  THE HINDU

Raises issue of reimbursement of ₹4,013.65 crore incurred by AP government in mega irrigation project

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has reiterated the State’s request to the Centre and Ministry of Jal Shakti (MoJS) to consider the revised cost for the mega multi-purpose Polavaram project.

During a detailed review of the Polavaram project progress, the Chief Minister raised the issue of reimbursement of ₹4,013.65 crore incurred by the AP government on the irrigation project. Of this, ₹2,234.28 crore was proposed for Extra Budget Release by the Union Finance Ministry to the MoJS. It was stated that the cost of revised irrigation component shall be construed as approved by the Polavaram Project Authority (PPA) at ₹20,398.61 crore as on April 1, 2014.

When the Jal Shakti Minister was requested to reimburse the funds incurred by the AP government for the completion of the national project, he responded positively. However, the project cost revision is being taken up for consideration.

Also read: AP CM Jagan seeks Centre’s support for Polavaram

The Centre and the State have been discussing whether the entire cost of the project, estimated by the PPA and approved by the Central Water Commission (CWC) at ₹55,448.87 crore at the 2017-18 price level, be considered, as against the Revised Cost Committee (RCC) estimation of ₹47,725.74 crore.

Reddy emphasised that land acquisition and relief and rehabilitation alone required around ₹29,000 crore, as approved by the PPA, CWC and MoJS and therefore capping the entire project cost at ₹20,398.61 crore is not feasible.

Further, he stressed, as Polavaram has been declared a national project, it is the responsibility of the Centre to handle it completion, as per the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014, and as per the Central Cabinet decision to complete the project. The AP government is just the executing authority as the project is monitored by the PPA under the Union government, he added.

The Chief Minister directed officials to take up the issue immediately with the Centre at the appropriate level, stating that the revised cost estimate as approved by the Central organisations — PPA, CWC and RCC — be considered in the interest of completion of the project and in the interest of people of AP.

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Published on October 26, 2020
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