Telugu Ganga project canal work delayed

Waiting for clearances or revised fund allocations.

Nellore: Work on branch canals under the Telugu Ganga Project has remained incomplete for decades because of the forest department failure to grant clearance to take them up.

However, despite the clearance being given in some cases through a GO No. 26 dated February 27, 2015, work remains pending for almost two years because of delay on the part of state government to sanction funds for the revised estimates pertaining to the project submitted in October last year.

Not only in Nellore and Chittoor districts, the project work has been pending right from Pothireddypadu head regulator in Kurnool district. It can be taken up once the government clears the revised budget of Rs 6672 Cr as against the original of Rs 4432 Cr.

The revision became inevitable because of constant increase in SSR (Standard Schedule of Rates), which keep changing every year, and the inordinate delay in completion of project for various reasons including land related legal tangles.

At the instance of the project engineers, some contractors carried out pending works worth Rs 84 Cr under a clause that bills exceeding 15 per cent of the allocation can be taken up and they too have been waiting for the payment.

According to the superintendent engineer of Telugu Ganga Project (Nellore division) Venkateswarlu, a part of branch canal works remained pending because of forest land of 313.63 hectares in 26 blocks in Nellore district.

Incidentally around 90 per cent of seven branch canals works have been completed in non-forest reaches but water cannot be supplied because of forest land in between.

On completion of the canal works in the forest blocks, 50,000 acres will come into cultivation in Nellore district, he said. TDP Engineers said that completion of the work on canals will also help in recharging ground water in villages along the canals.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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