Home Tags Drought

Experts’ SOS to save AP, TS and Karnataka from drought


Water experts urging the Indian parliament to stop ‘mindless’ Westward diversion of Krishna basin water by Maharashtra which is being drained into sea . By this Karnataka, Telangaan, Andrha pradesh could be saved from looming severe drought. It is not too late, say Himanshu Thakkar and Parineeta Dandekar of SANDRP (Sourth Asia Network on Dams, Rivers and People. We carry their warning to the nation posted in SANDRP website. It is an emergency call to the governments of AP and Telangana as well.


Large parts of Krishna basin spanning Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are facing massive rainfall deficits, drought like conditions and crop failures. The tail-end reservoirs of Srisailam and Nagarjun Sagar are almost empty. Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are already thinking of conserving the available water for drinking water. They are not even thinking of releasing any water for saving the crops in delta farmers. In Upstream Maharashtra itself, The Ujani dam has minimum storage and perennially dry Marathawada has the highest rainfall deficit. Shockingly, in this very period from July 1 to Aug 6, Maharashtra has diverted more than 350 Million Cubic Meters of water (at most conservative estimates) FROM this very Krishna and Bhima basin to the High Rainfall area of Konkan and down to the sea! If this diversion was stopped since July 1, when the signs of severe monsoon deficits in the three states were already there, this water would have been available to save crops in lakhs of acres in the river basin, and some it would have also flowed to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and water may have been available for saving this crop. How can continue such wasteful use of water in deficit basin, at the cost of livelihoods of lakhs of farmers? Even now it is necessary to URGENTLY review this situation and consider stopping diversion of water FROM Krishna basin to sea. This may save crops and livelihoods of lakhs of farmers.

Kharif crop planting across majority of Marathwada has failed due to lack of water availability. Lakhs of farmers are staring at crop loss even after double and at places triple sowing. Some parts of Marathwada are still deploying tankers for drinking water supply since last year.

Koyna and Tata Dams in Maharashtra:The westward diversion of water from Krishna basin to Konkan and further to sea is happening through the four-stage Koyna Dam with total installed capacity of 1920 MW. These projects, as per the daily reports of Maharashtra Load Despatch Centre, generated 337.47 Million Units (MU) of power between July 1 and Aug 6, 2015. As per Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal Award, Koyna is annually diverting 1911 MCM (Million Cubic Meters) of Water.

So assuming proportionate diversion, Koyna project would have diverted 216.7 MCM during July 1 to Aug 6. Why we can afford to forgo the loss of power now It is interesting to note that during this period from July 1 to Aug 6, 2015, wind power generation in Maharashtra was 1378.1 MU, almost three times the power generation from Koyna and Tata dams that would have been forgone if the diversion was stopped.

Moreover, as it well known during this period, the power demand across the country was so low that the Plant Load Factor of Thermal Power projects have come close to 50% from peak of over 80%, NTPC is talking about poor off take of power and the cost of power at power exchanges have come down below 2.5 per unit, from 7.5 per unit a few years ago.

All this indicates that this loss of power could have been compensated, but there is no way to compensate the losses due to loss of water for the farmers.

We have raised this question earlier too. It is high time that we review this mindless practice of diverting water from a known water deficit situation, at least in such severe drought like situations and consider stopping this diversion when country’s power situation allows us to forgo the power loss from stoppage of diversion.

We hope in the interest of lakhs of farmers Maharashtra government will urgently review this situation and stop this mindless diversion of water from the water deficit river basin to sea. At least let us have a public debate on this.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

Rahul Effect?: Naidu shifts focus on Rayalaseema


Chief minister Chandrababu Naidu appears to have shifted his focus on Rayalaseeama. Wednesday was the day of Rayalaseema in AP secretariat.

For the past few months, the region is not all in the news, except for looming drought in wake of failure of monsoons to bring enough rains so far. This region’s Anantapur district receives lowest rainfall in India, after Jaisalmer.

There has been growing resentment among the leaders of R’seema that Naidu is giving short shrift to the region just because his TDP did not get enough seats from the region. YSR Congress and Congress have raised the banner of revolt to highlight governmental apathy towards the region. Oppositon leader YS Jagan toured the region in the name Odarpu yatra. AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi toured Anantapur  and distributed financial assistance to family members of those farmers who committed suicide, all this happened while Naidu was busy with Pushkaralu.

Both parties are planning a movement, though separately, for the allocation of more funds for the early completion of Galeru-Nagari and Handri-Neeva projects.Congress seniors DL Ravindra Reddy and C Ramachandraiah have called upon people of Rayalaseema to take to streets to fight for the rights of the backward region, “as the TDP government is reneging on its promises made to Rayalaseema.”
While the Opposition parties have been more visible in region, governmental activity is conspicuously absent.

Rubbing salt to the wound,  for the past one year, coastal Andhra, because of the development of high profile capital, business conclave in Vizag, Godavari Pushkaralu, tours of Singapore teams etc,  has attracted an envious attention.

Naidu seems to have realized the political ramifications of these lopsided developments.

He devoted most of Wednesday to Rayalaseema.

He held a video conference with the collectors of Anantapur, Chittoor, Kurnool and Kadapa districts and inquired about the progress of ongoing irrigation projects in the region.
Chief Minister directed the officials to complete all the unfinished works of Handri-Neeva Sujala Sravanti (HNSS) phase-II by December 2015 as the project is key to store Krishna waters, which will be brought to Rayalaseema after the completion of Pattiseema Lift Irrigation Project, aimed at diverting Godavari waters to Krishna Basin. He also ordered the officials to ensure that
Galeru Nagari Sujala Sravanti (GNSS), Telugu Ganga and Srisailam Right Branch Canal, be completed at the earliest.

Interestingly, the State government also announced an interim special package with an amount of Rs 49.5 lakh to support the families of 33 farmers, who had committed suicide in Ananatapuramu. Is it not Rahul effect?

YSRC has fired the salvo that without completing either the Handri-Neeva Sujala Sravanti (HNSS) or Galeru Nagari Sujala Sravanti (GNSS) project, how you divert Krishna Waters simply by finishing Patti Seema.

He gave Collectors, Engineer-in-chiefs and Chief Engineer’s extraordinary powers to expedite the completion of works od the pending projects.




Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.



[X] Close
[X] Close