Managing projects by KRMB based on 3-member panel advises: Telangana Irrigation Secretary

The State Government on Friday clarified that it did not agree to hand over the 15 common projects on River Krishna to the KRMB as projected in certain media.

Managing projects by KRMB based on 3-member panel advises: Telangana Irrigation Secretary

HYDERABAD: In a firefighting exercise the State Government on Friday clarified that the Irrigation and Command Area Development Department did not agree to handover the 15 common projects on River Krishna to the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) as projected in certain media.

Secretary, I&CAD in a statement issued here on Friday said that the meeting which was held at Jalasoudha on February 1, 2024, under the chairmanship of KRMB Chairperson Sivanandan Kumar and attended by the Engineers in Chief of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh was a follow-up meeting of the January 17, 2024 meeting with secretary Union Jala Shakthi Ministry Debashree Mukherjee.

Also Read: Telangana agrees to management of projects by KRMB, three-member committee to decide on share in waters

“Telangana Government has laid certain conditions before the KRMB for handing over of management of the common projects to the board. First, there must be equal share of Krishna water between the States till Krishna Tribunal gives its verdict,” he said.

Telangana demanded that priority be given to the needs of Krishna basin as per the award by the KWDT-I and the Srisailam project must be continued as a hydel power project as per the permission of the Planning Commission. Other conditions include the release of 264 TMC water to Nagarjuna Sagar through hydel power generation, limiting the release of water to the Pothireddypadu head regulator to only 34 TMC, consideration of 20 percent of water consumed for drinking water purposes, permission to carry over unused water of a particular water year and immediate restriction on the construction of illegal projects by AP.

Rahul Bojja said that the earlier Government in principle agreed to hand over the management of projects to KRMB after the Centre released a gazette notification determining the scope of the KRMB and the GRMB. He said that the Telangana Government also allocated Rs 200 crore as seed money for the KRMB.

“Telangana time and again mentioned these pre-conditions in the meetings with the centre and KRMB. We have urged the Centre on January 17, 2024, to put our points before the Apex Council meeting,” Rahul Bojja pointed out.

Quoting C Muralidhar Rao, the ENC of Telangana I&CAD, the secretary said that Telangana made it clear that the department would require the State Government’s approval to hand over the management of 10 common outlets under Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar. “Except the five power generating units KRMB would be entrusted with the issues of water release and management as per the directions of the three-member committee,” he said.

He pointed out that at any stage the Telangana side did not surrender to the dictums of the Board or the Andhra Pradesh side as mentioned in the media. He reminded that the Telangana Government had formally requested the Union Ministry of Jal Shakti to issue a corrigendum addressing discrepancies in the minutes of the meeting held on January 17. Rahul Bojja wrote a letter to the Secretary of the Department of Water Resources, Ministry of Jal Shakti in which he highlighted that certain points raised by the Telangana delegation during the meeting were not recorded in the minutes.

Conversely, some points not agreed upon by Telangana were incorrectly documented as agreed. Bojja clarified that, regarding the proposal to hand over headwork to KRMB, Telangana members intended to discuss the matter with the Government before reaching a decision. However, the minutes inaccurately indicated Telangana's agreement to hand over the components, prompting the request for an amendment.

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