Centre to clear Rs 2,234 Cr Polavaram dues to AP


At long last, after a near explosive confrontation, the Union Finance Ministry has agreed to clear Rs. 2,234Cr pending payments to Andhra Pradesh under the Polavaram irrigation project. This is towards the already completed works. The decision comes after a rebellious stand taken by the Jaganmohan Reddy regime in the recent weeks. CM Jagan himself shot off an aggressive letter to the Prime Minister, while AP Government’s Advisor Subhash Chandra Garg also made serious comments against Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman.

Now, the Union Finance Minister has told the Union Jal Shakti Ministry that it has no objections to clear the pending dues to AP. As such, required steps may be taken by the Polavaram Project Authority (PPA) to go ahead with the payments clearances. The Andhra Pradesh Government has brought enormous pressure on the Centre in the past few weeks on Polavaram dues. YCP Ministers started asking the Centre to take over the project and complete it by itself. However, the Centre has not responded on this issue whether it would consider taking over the project or not. But, it has come forward to clear pending dues for the time being.
As per reports, AP would have to get a total pending dues of Rs. 9,288 Cr. This included Rs. 2,234 Cr towards completed works and another Rs. 7,053 Cr towards the adjustments as per the 2013-`14 estimated costs of the project.

During her recent visit to AP, the Government made representations to Sitaraman to clear pending payments. Also, the Opposition has been raising much political heat on the YCP on delays in Polavaram completion. Amid growing hostile debates, the Centre has brought the curtain down on the issue temporarily by agreeing to the State’s demand partially.

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