Rajahmundry: Rs 30 crore for repair works on SA Cotton barrage

Officials found leakage of water from closed crest gates

Rajahmundry: To ensure against any leakage from Sir Arthur Cotton barrage across Godavari river and provide for adequate supply of water for cultivation of crops and drinking water needs in Godavari delta region, the water resources authorities are carrying out repair works at a cost of Rs30 crores.

Water level in the Godavari river plummets during the lean season causing hardships to the farmers to cultivate crops mainly paddy in Rabi season in the Godavari delta region.

The water resource authorities have to find alternate sources of water to pump into the river to supply to the fields located in eastern, western and central delta areas for cultivation.

At present, nearly 7,400 cusecs of water is available in the river as the authorities are getting water from alternate sources including from Seeleru.
To overcome the shortage of water, the authorities have started supply of water through canals to specific areas by turns.

Farmers were even asked to opt for cultivation of pulses instead of paddy in some areas as the latter requires more water. Every drop of the water in the river stored in the pond at the barrage is very important and needs to be saved.

Accordingly, when the water resources authorities started checking, they found leakage of water from the closed crest gates from the gaps at the barrage for want of proper maintenance for a long time.

The authorities have started taking up repair work at the barrage. They have entrusted the task to Hyderabad based Swapna Projects Private Limited to carry out the repair works at barrage over a period of two years.

The agency has started changing the rubber fields fixed to the bottom of iron crest gates as they were damaged and causing gaps between the gates and the cement concrete slab resulting in leakage of water from the barrage downstream.

The rubber fields serve as a perfect seal between the iron crest gates and the concrete slab down below. The rubber fields also help avoid corrosion of iron gates as they soak in the water continuously when gates are shut. Similarly, electronic panels for each gate are also being changed.

These panels help the authorities operate the gates to close or to open.
The authorities are also carrying out repair works to the stop lock gates which serve as stand-by gates to the main gates at the barrage.

Godavari river conservator P.V. Tirupati Rao said, “We are carrying out repair works to the crest gates at the barrage at Dowleswaram to operate them properly as per our needs. Unless all the crest gates function properly, it will not be possible to regulate the flow of water in the river from upstream to downstream through the barrage”

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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