Gajendra Singh Shekhawat asks Jagan, KCR to put on hold all water projects

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In a rude jolt to Andhra Pradesh government, Union Minister for Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Saturday directed Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy to put on hold the move to lift 3 tmc of the Krishna water from the Srisailam reservoir. He directed chief ministes of both the states not to take up any new projects without the approval of the apex council.

In a letter to Andhra Pradesh chief minister Jaganmohan Reddy and his Telangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao, the Union minister directed officials of the Ministry to immediately call for a meeting of the Apex Council to discuss about the issue and also other matters pertaining to the utilization of the Krishna waters by both the States.

The Union Minister also called for a meeting of the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) to technically examine the detailed project report (DPR) of the new projects proposed by the AP government to draw water from the Srisailam reservoir on the Krishna. The AP government has recently granted administrative sanction to lift 3 tmc of water from the Srisailam reservoir.

The apex council meeting will be chaired by the council chairman and Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and attended by Jagan and Chandrasekhar Rao.

Recently, state BJP president Bandi Sanjay had complained to Shekhawat on the AP government’s move to divert Krishna water to Rayalaseema region. Separately, the Telangana government has complained to Krishna River Management Board that he Andhra Pradesh government had issued GO 203 on May 5 to divert about 10 tmcft water per day from Krishna river to Rayalaseema region, mostly for areas outside the river basin.

The Telangana Irrigation Department had urged the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) to prevent the Andhra Pradesh government from taking up any further action with regard to GO 203, issued on May 5 to divert 10 tmcft water from Srisailam to Rayalaseema.

Further, the Telangana government had moved the Supreme Court with an appeal to direct AP to halt the tender process for the irrigation project in violation APRA and the instructions of the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB).

The Andhra Pradesh government had proposed for construction of Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme, expansion of Pothireddypadu project and also increasing the capacity of the Srisailam Right Bank Canal under GO 203 issued in May this year. Tenders for the works had already been called for.

The Telangana government took strong objection to the daid GO stating that it is violative of the AP Reorganisation Act and sought stay orders against the GO.

KRMB had also sent a letter to Andhra Pradesh special chief secretary for water resources development stating that even calling for tenders for work on the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme would violate the APRA.

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