Has Congress govt’s irrigation water mismanagement led to drought in Telangana?

The irrigation water mismanagement by the Congress government seems to have resulted in drought-like conditions throughout Telangana. As a result, crops are drying, and farmers are taking to the streets, urging for water to save their crops.

In the Krishna basin, the Alimineti Madhava Reddy project suffered due to a lack of inflows, leaving canals dry. As a result, farmers resorted to groundwater pumping, digging numerous borewells to salvage their crops, leading to economic distress. Only after Minister Komatireddy Venkat Reddy intervened, water was released for five days, but it was too late; the damage was done.

Meanwhile, Makthal MLA Vakiti Srihari’s plea to save crops in the Sangambanda Reservoir area prompted Irrigation Minister Uttam Kumar Reddy to release water. This prompts the question of whether MLAs and ministers approve water release for farmers.

The Congress government’s irrigation management in Telangana has been marred by incompetence. Despite ample rainfall as recorded by the Meteorological Department, irrigation projects face political hurdles, with gates opened only at the behest of politicians.

Groundwater levels plummet, exacerbating the crisis, yet the CM and minister blame scanty rainfall and the consequent drought, ignoring official records indicating sufficient rainfall.

Traditionally, irrigation in Telangana relies not just on canals but also on tanks. However, the Congress government neglects this aspect, leading to the depletion of groundwater and agricultural collapse.

The KCR government’s strategy of connecting tanks to irrigation projects ensured groundwater recharge. In contrast, the Congress government’s failure to fill tanks exacerbates the reliance on borewells and wells, now dried up due to excessive pumping.

In essence, Telangana’s irrigation water woes stem from the mismanagement of the Congress government.