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Jagan Directs Officials to Expedite Polavaram D-wall Works

DECCAN CHRONICLE | Sampat G Samaritan

Published on: June 6, 2023 | Updated on: June 6, 2023

CM Jagan Mohan Reddy was reviewing the progress of the works of the Polavaram irrigation project during his visit to the project site in Polavaram in Eluru district on Tuesday. (Image By Arrangement)

Vijayawada: Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has directed the water resources authorities to expedite completion of construction of the Polavaram project’s diaphragm wall. This, he said, would facilitate the speedier construction of the earth-cum-rock-fill dam.

The CM was reviewing the progress of the works of the irrigation project during his visit to the project site in Polavaram in Eluru district on Tuesday.

He enquired with the water resource officials about the progress in the resettlement and rehabilitation efforts for the project-displaced families. Rehabilitation colonies should be developed with all requisite amenities for the benefit of PDFs and shift these families as per the schedule, he stressed.

The officials informed the CM that they would complete the works on the diaphragm wall by December as per the action plan. So far, 12,658 project-displaced families were shifted to the rehabilitation colonies.

Jagan Mohan Reddy asked the officials to develop the project site as a wonderful tourism destination by, among other facilities, constructing a bridge in Polavaram and a hotel with good amenities.

The officials said the Centre had given its nod for release Rs 12,911 crore by issuing a memorandum through its finance wing to the Union ministry of Jal Sakthi for completion of the Polavaram project works under phase-1. They said the Centre had also given Rs 2,000 crore for erecting a parallel diaphragm wall near the completely damaged portions and for the repair works to the damaged portions of the D-wall. "It suffered damage due to lack of proper planning by the previous (TD) government," officials told the CM.

They also said the Centre had given exemption to clear bills for works, component-wise, as it would otherwise cause delays in the clearing of bills and execution of the project. They thanked the CM for keeping in touch with the Centre on a regular basis and getting the necessary funds sanctioned and released.

The officials claimed that a section of the media was exaggerating the "small issue" of a "slight" sinking of a portion of guide wall. They told the CM that the guide wall designs were issued by the Central Water Commission and the works were also taken up accordingly.

They said the CWC was informed about this and the repair works would be taken up once they get permission from it.

The Chief Minister responded by saying that small issues could crop up when a huge project was implemented. He faulted the previous TD government for keeping gaps in the upper coffer dam, as this "caused the damage to the diaphragm wall when Godavari river water passed through such gaps at high velocity."

"This resulted in additional expenditure of `2,000 crore for the repair work and it also caused a delay in the execution of the ECRF dam," he said.

 Jagan Mohan Reddy slammed a section of the media for its "failure" to expose such a lapse "for the reason that the works were given to the kin of media baron Ramoji Rao."

The Chief Minister asked the officials to take up the repair works to the guide wall even though it was not directly related to the project structure.

The officials briefed the CM about the progress of construction of several components of the project works by saying that works related to spillway concrete were over. As many as 48 radial gates were fixed, the upper and lower coffer dams were completed as also the dam at Gap-3, the tunnels for setting up the power house were dug up, the approach channel works were nearing completion and sand filling and vibro compaction at the damaged portion of the D-wall at Gap-1 were over, they reported to the CM.

Also, transportation of sand was completed at the Gap-2 area so that it would help start the construction of the ECRF dam.

Earlier, the CM inspected the progress of works of the upper cofferdam, lower cofferdam, the damaged portion of the diaphragm wall, the sand filling at scoured portion of the D-wall, the vibro compaction works and construction of the parallel D-wall and the preparatory works related to the ECRF dam.