Hyderabad: Wapcos Limited, a Government of India undertaking providing consultancy services regarding all aspects of water resources, power and infrastructure, has said that about 3,367.22 acres is required for the Rachakonda water body proposed by the Telangana government.
Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao and minister K.T. Rama Rao have said that previous governments did not concentrate on developing water bodies like the Osman Sagar and Himayat Sagar and that the TRS government would establish two more water bodies for Hyderabad at Shamirpet and Rachakonda.
The government had appointed Wapcos Limited for preparing detailed project reports (DPR) for the two proposed bodies and had released `1.84 crore towards consultancy charges.
Wapcos has prepared a blueprint of the lake and identified 3,367.22 acres land at Rachakonda and other hills in Dandu Malkapuram and Devalamma Nagaram villages of Choutuppal mandal in Nalgonda district.
The Revenue department has identified 1,000 acres in a reserve forest, 1,000.5 acres government land, 18 acres bhudaan land and the remaining 1,349.17 acres patta land of villagers.
For completing the project, the government has to acquire the patta lands and allot alternative land to the Forest department. At present the land value is about Rs 4 lakh per acre as per the registrations department and Rs6 lakh to Rs 7 lakh in the open market.
Wapcos is currently conducting soil tests at 10 points of the proposed water body
An official source from the company said that after soil tests, the final DPR will be submitted to the TS government. “The government can begin work after the DPR. We are geared up at our end. Out of 10 points, we have sent soil samples from six,” the source said.
“As per our preliminary plan, a dam will be constructed at Devalamma Nagaram village in an ‘L’ shape. The lake begins at Malkapur village at the west side. Among the hills, the lake will be an attractive place,” the source added.
Dandu Malkapur village revenue officer (VRO) Mr Gutta Venkat Reddy said that about 3,088.29 acres of land is under his jurisdiction and the remaining 278.33 acres is in Devalamma Nagaram village.
The Telangana government has announced plans to set up a film city at Rachakonda on 2,000 acres. Once these two projects are complete, these localities, which are considered remote areas, will become tourism spots.
Problems may arise in acquiring land for lake
The Telangana government is likely to face hurdles in acquiring land for the proposed Rachakonda water body.
It needs to acquire about 1,349.17 acres from private individuals for the project. Of this about 150 acres belongs to SCs and STs. The present land value is between Rs 6 lakh and Rs 7 lakh per acre. The registration value is around Rs 4 lakh.
As the private lands are located among bits of government and forest lands, the government will not be able to complete the project without acquiring these lands. Wapcos is already facing protests from locals at another proposed water body at Shamirpet.
When Wapcos tried to take soil samples there, locals stopped them. At Rachakonda, however, locals are expecting a good price from the government. There are around 490 toddy trees in the Rachakonda water body area with many families depending on it. The government has to provide them alternatives.
Similarly, the government will have to give alternative land to the Forest department for acquiring reserve forest lands of about 1,000 acres.
As per the Wapcos blue-print, a dam will be constructed near Devalamma Nagaram village. The government will need more land for the canals from the dam. The estimations for land for the canals are not ready yet.