Water War – Love lost between KCR, Jagan?

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The water dispute between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh refuses to die down. The water sharing dispute between the two Telugu speaking states is far from over and is poised to enter another phase of protracted legal tussle.

The Telangana goverment is all set lock its horns with the Andhra Pradesh government over its decision to lift three to four tmc of water from Srisailam by building a new lift irrigation project.

In a significant development, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao who held a high-level meeting late on Monday evening at Pragati Bhavan had asked the officials to move the Krishna River Water Management Board to oppose the Jagan government’s move to lift water from Srisailam for its irrigation projects. The high-level meeting was attended by Telangana irrigation minister Harish Rao, Energy Minister G Jagadish Reddy, minister V Srinivas Goud and other top officials.

On May 5, the Jagan government had issued a GO 203 to lift three to four tmc of water from from Srisailam by building a new lift irrigation project. The Andhra Pradesh government’s initial plan was to draw 10 tmc of water – 7 tmc of water from Pothireddypadu head regulator and another 3 tmc from Sangameswaram. However, the Jagan government had changed its plan and issued a GO to lift three to four tmc of water from Srisailam project.

Expressing his anger, Chandrasekhara Rao was of the view the AP government took a unilateral decision in issuing the GO and asked the Telangana legal department to mull the legal options before the government apart from moving Krishna River Water Management Board. The Chief Minister reportedly pointed out that the AP government had issued the GO move without the consent of the Apex Committee nor consulted the Telangana government. “It is an inter-State project. The said GO issued by the AP government is against the AP Reorganization Act. We should challenge this in Krishna River Water Management Board and also look at legal options,” KCR told the officials. As per the AP Reorganization Act, it is legally binding on both the governments to get an approval from the Apex Committee for taking up any project on inter-State rivers either in Telangana or AP.

The Telangana Chief Minister told the officials that the AP government’s move is against the irrigation interests of Telangana and it would severely hurt the people of Mahabubnagar, Ranga Reddy and Nalgonda districts.

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