Telangana, AP get Arun Jaitley's pat for projects

Jaitley specifically mentioned Telangana and AP during his speech at the India Water Week convention.

Hyderabad: Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley who took pains to specifically mention TS and AP during his speech at the India Water Week convention in Delhi on Monday, promised more help from the Centre for the two Telugu states for completing several pending irrigation projects on time. Mr Jaitley praised the efforts of TS government, especially the Mission Kakatiya project that envisaged restoration of 45,000 irrigation tanks constructed thousands of years ago.

He said unless more importance was given to the irrigation sector by pumping huge finances, sustainability in agriculture would not be realised. Mr Jaitley also complimented AP Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu for completing the Pattiseema lift irrigation scheme that provides a link for diversion of Godavari waters to Krishna Basin in record time. However, keeping in mind the recent AP Cabinet resolution demanding more funds to AP as promised in the AP Reorganisation Act, including for Polavaram dam, Mr Jaitley said the Centre would extend more financial help for Polavaram dam as it is the lifeline of AP and will help end drought in Rayalaseema region.

“If Polavaram is completed in all respects, more water could be diverted to rain-deficit areas, especially to drought-stricken Rayalaseema region,” he said. Meanwhile, the TS government, while giving a PowerPoint presentation on the irrigation systems in the state at the convention, suggested to the Centre to use the latest technology to gather information of violations by upper riparian states in not releasing waters to states downstream.

TS irrigation advisor and former chief engineer, Central Water Commission, R. Vidyasagar Rao attended a meeting convened by Union water resources minister Uma Bharathi on Monday. Irrigation ministers from Chhattisgarh, Karnataka and Haryana also attended. Each state was specifically asked by Ms Bharathi present both success stories as well as challenging tasks ahead. To this, Mr Rao said Mission Kakatiya was the most successful achievement by the state government by taking up renovating 45,000 irrigation tanks in five phases and completion of first phase in 9000 tanks during last year was appreciated by one and all.

With regard to challenges ahead, Mr Rao told the conclave that TS had geographical disadvantage of being located at a higher contour while the Godavari River traverses 600 ft below, he said. He suggested that at present. According to Mr Rao, Ms Bharati agreed to his suggestions and promised to implement them.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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