Injustice to Rayalaseema in non-release of funds for irrigation projects: RIF


17 March 2023

Tirupati: The Rayalaseema Intellectual Forum (RIF) has criticised the state government, saying it did an injustice to the region by failing to allocate funds in the 2023-24 annual budget for irrigation projects on Tungabhadra river.

In a statement on Thursday, RIF convener Purushotham Reddy said it was unfortunate that urgent works like construction of a parallel canal to the Tungabhadra HLC and LLC, Vedavati, Siddeswaram Alugu and Gundrevula projects on the river would suffer as a result.

“The government failed to disclose the facts and status of the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme, which it designed to address the region's water scarcity. The government is pushing back the completion dates of the first and second phases of the Galeru-Nagari and Handri-Neeva works to 2024, 2025 and 2026," he said.

He said it was important that the Gundrevula project must be completed before water could be released to these minor irrigation projects.

“The main reason for the backwardness of Rayalaseema area is that the water problem persists. Although there are huge water resources through Krishna, Tungabhadra and Kundu rivers, Seema is faced with drought due to the construction of projects on those rivers and inadequate supply of water to Seema's farms,” he noted.

According to the RIF convener, Tungabhadra is the sole alternative to tackle Rayalaseema's water problem. While only 31tmc of water must be lifted and irrigated into Tungabhadra from River Krishna, 150 TMC of excess water on an average is being let into the Tungabhadra from Krishna this year, totalling 630tmc, which demonstrated the importance of Tungabhadra in resolving Rayalaseema's water woes, he said.

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