A proud moment for the State of Telangana as the world acknowledged and applauded the monumental efforts of the Telangana Government in registering phenomenal success stories with regard to irrigation and drinking water. The Government’s flagship programmes – Kaleshwaram, the world’s largest multi-stage lift irrigation project, and Mission Bhagiratha, the ambitious drinking water project, have received thunderous applause from the Civil Engineers in the USA. Telangana’s enduring symbols of engineering excellence have earned laurels at the World Environmental and Water Resources Congress held at Nevada, USA and the Kaleshwaram Project has received a global recognition from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).
Maria C Lehman, President, ASCE has presented Proclamation to IT and Industries Minister KT Rama Rao bestowing a distinguished recognition on the lift irrigation project as an ‘Enduring Symbol of Engineering Progress and Partnership’.
Minister KT Rama Rao has received the rare honour to represent an Indian state on a global platform at the World Environmental and Water Resources Congress organized by the ASCE . The Minister was invited to give a detailed presentation on the topic ‘Many Benefits and Social Equity from Lifting a River: Story of the World’s Largest Multi-stage Lift Irrigation Project’ at the conference attended by over 1000 delegates from across the world.
The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) represents more than 1,50,000 members of the civil engineering profession in 177 countries. Founded in 1852, ASCE is America’s oldest engineering society. Environmental & Water Resources Institute (EWRI) is the American Society of Civil Engineers’ technical source for environmental and water-related issues; EWRI’s vision is “Advancing water resources and environmental solutions to achieve a sustainable future.”
Earlier, the Minister participated in this prestigious annual event held in Sacramento,US exactly six years ago on May 22, 2017. Back then, he explained the various water related initiatives taken up by the Telangana Government such as Kaleshwaram Project, Mission Bhageeratha and Mission Kakatiya taken up under the visionary leadership of Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao. Earlier this year, a delegation from the ASCE had visited Telangana and toured the Kaleshwaram Project and they were impressed by the sheer scale and speed with which the project was executed. Thanking the ASCE team for making a visit to Telangana, the Minister invited them to host their next event in Telangana, India.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister KTR recounted the remarkable transformation of Telangana in the last nine years. The Minister spoke at length showcasing Telangana’s story of resilience and transformation and presented an account of groundbreaking engineering achievements achieved by the youngest state of India. “Telangana has successfully built the world’s largest multi-stage lift irrigation project, Kaleshwaram, and completed the ambitious Mission Bhagiratha, providing piped drinking water to every home in the State. These remarkable projects were not only completed in record time but also with utmost efficiency and cost-effectiveness,” Minister KTR said.
The Minister established how once an arid Telangana region – in severe distress due to lack of irrigation water, insufficient drinking water, rampant migration, and farmer suicides – has transformed under the visionary leadership of CM K Chandrashekar Rao (KCR). “CM KCR has fought an uphill battle and transformed the fate of Telangana,” said Minister KTR.
The Minister said that with strategic planning, innovative thinking, and meticulous execution, CM KCR has translated his vision into tangible results and underscored the milestones achieved by the state on various counts across sectors. “The completion of the Kaleshwaram project in record time stands as a testament to his exceptional leadership and his ability to turn ambitious ideas into concrete achievements. Driven by a relentless passion for change, KCR embarked on a mission to solve Telangana’s decades-old water problem,” he said.
To the world audience, Minister KTR presented the scale of the Kaleshwaram project, the amazing speed at which the various components of the project were built, the social equity and enormous benefits of the project. To elucidate the mammoth magnitude of the project, the Minister said, “This colossal engineering marvel was completed in a record span of just four years with an investment of 11 billion dollars.The amount of earth moved during its construction would fill 101 Pyramids of Giza. The steel used in the project would be enough to build 66 Eiffel Towers, and the concrete poured would erect 53 Burj Khalifas.”
Minister KTR said that planned investments in new irrigation projects and revitalization of existing systems contributed to the expansion of cultivated land and have led to the ushering of five revolutions in agriculture and allied sectors. “The Kaleshwaram Project has transformed Telangana into the new rice bowl of India, irrigating lakhs of acres with two cropping cycles. The gross irrigated land has increased by an impressive 119%, and paddy production has multiplied fourfold, from 3 million tons in 2015-16 to 15 million tons in 2022-23.”
Commending the contribution of the exceptional workforce from across the country who were involved in the massive projects, the Minister said “The remarkable success of these two prestigious projects in Telangana is a testament to the hard work and dedication of an exceptional workforce including talented engineers. People from different states in India came together, contributing their skills and expertise to make these projects a reality.”
Minister KTR said that by lifting a river against all odds, CM KCR has uplifted millions of lives and livelihoods in Telangana. “As the river flows with renewed vigor, may the spirit of the Kaleshwaram Project continue to inspire us to defy limits and create a future where no challenge is too great, and no dream is out of reach,” the Minister concluded.