Kaleshwaram Irrigation Project. (Photo: DC)
HYDERABAD: In a partial relief to the Telangana government, the Supreme Court on Monday modified its earlier status quo order on the Kaleshwaram lift irrigation scheme (KLIS) work meant to enhance its intake capacity.
The apex court permitted the Godavari River Management Board (GRMB) and the Central Water Commission (CWC) to consider the pleas submitted by the Telangana government seeking approval to undertake works to draw an additional 1 tmc ft (thousand million cubic feet of water) from the Godavari to provide more irrigation facilities.
The apex court made it clear that the approvals would be subject to its final order.
The KLIS was designed with an intake of 2 tmc ft, to draw 240 tmc ft of water during the rainy season when the river will be full.
In July 2022, the Supreme Court ordered status quo on the project works, after hearing a batch of petitions which alleged that the Telangana government was increasing the capacity of the project without clearances. The Telangana government filed a petition in September, requesting the status quo orders be vacated.
Senior counsel C.S. Vaidyanathan, representing the Telangana government, told the court that the petitions questioning the project’s expansion were politically motivated, and that the additional 1 tmc ft drawal of water did not amount to a new project and that it was a part of the ongoing Kaleshwaram project.