Telangana has argued that three projects constructed by Andhra should be considered unauthorised, unless proper accounting and allocation is established for them.

An image of Srisailam dam when gates were openedIMAGE FOR REPRESENTATION: WIKIPEDIA COMMONS/CHINTOHERE)
news Water conflict Friday, August 13, 2021 - 09:37

The Telangana government has urged the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) to restrain Andhra Pradesh from diverting water from the foreshore of the Srisailam reservoir, through three allegedly unauthorised projects, to KC Canal. Telangana Irrigation Department's Engineer-in-Chief (General), C Muralidhar, has written to the KRMB Chairman, requesting him to restrain Andhra Pradesh from diverting water through three unauthorised projects unless proper accounting and allocation is established for them.

He contended that the KC Canal lift irrigation scheme at Muchumarri, the link canal connecting HNSS LIS at Malyala with KC Canal, and the escape channel from Banakacherla cross regulator for feeding the KC Canal ayacut are illegal and cannot be permitted. Muralidhar argued that Andhra Pradesh can draw only 39 TMC water from Srisailam but by taking up unauthorised lift projects which have no allocation, it is drawing excess water

"The operation of three unauthorised projects, in addition to the existing excess utilisation under KC Canal from Tungabhadra stem, has already affected the water availability to several projects on mainstream of river Krishna to in basin projects of Telangana depending on Srisailam such as Nagarjunasagar, Hyderabad water supply etc. As Andhra Pradesh is envisaging to divert water from the bottom of Srisailam reservoir i.e +798 feet it will also adversely affect drinking water supply to Hyderabad city also," reads the letter.

He said that contrary to the spirit of Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal-I (KWDT-I), Andhra Pradesh, while drawing excess water from Tungabhadra dam, has made additional arrangements to draw water from Srisailam reservoir. This action of Andhra Pradesh is in complete violation of provisions of KWDT-I, he said. He said that Andhra Pradesh secured protection of 39.90 TMC to KC Canal from the KWDT-I. He pointed out that Telangana is challenging the same before the KWDT-II, requesting to restrain Andhra Pradesh not to use more than 10 TMC for the canal.

Data submitted before the KWDT-II shows an average utilisation of 54 TMC from KC Canal against its earmarked 31.90 TMC while RDS Canal of Telangana could not use even 5 TMC of water against its protected quality of 15.90 TMC due to sheer neglect of Andhra Pradesh. The latest development came amid the Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao asking his officials to work with commitment to protect the state's share in river waters.

In a recent high level review meeting, the CM made it clear that there was no question of backtracking on the issue. He reviewed the verdicts given by the Bachawat Tribunal and Brijesh Kumar Tribunal on the rightful and legal share of allocation of waters as a right to Telangana. KCR's government is also up in arms against a recent gazette notification as per which the Krishna and Godavari River Management Boards (KRMB and GRMB) will have control over the operations and maintenance of irrigation projects in both Krishna and Godavari basins with effect from October 14, 2021.

With IANS inputs

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