Stating that it was not against river-linking programme, the Telangana government urged the Centre to launch the programme from north India first. Telangana wants water from upstream Mahanadi and other rivers into Godavari first and then will agree to divert water from Godavari to Krishna.
Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao conveyed this at a meeting convened by Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharati in Delhi on Tuesday. The TS government disputed with the Centre’s argument that there were surplus waters in Godavari and they could be diverted to Krishna. “If there are surplus waters in Godavari, why does the Central government not according hydrological clearance to Pranahita-Chevella. Why the Centre is still verifying whether water is available or not in Godavari for Pranahita-Chevella,” wondered officials in irrigation department.
The proposal is to divert surplus waters from Godavari to Krishna and from Krishna to Cauvery. “The surplus waters are available in Godavari downstream of Sabari river. They could use them. AP could divert 80 tmc water to Krishna. We have no objection. But, the Centre should first divert waters from Ganga, Brahmaputra and Mahanadi to Godavari and accord permissions to Telangana irrigation projects. Later, the Centre could divert the available surplus waters from Godavari to other rivers,” Harish Rao said at the meeting.
“Telangana will oppose diverting Godavari waters to other rivers, if the Centre does not divert the waters from Mahanadi and others to Godavari first. If Godavari received waters from other rivers, then only the diversion of Godavari waters will be allowed,” Harish Rao contended.
COMPLAINT AGAINST AP
In the evening, Harish Rao lodged a complaint with Uma Bharati on AP’s alleged excess use of Krishna waters, denying the rightful share of TS. Harish Rao informed Uma Bharati that as the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) could not resolve the problem, they were taking up the issue with her. Uma Bharati is apex council chairperson of both Godavari and Krishna river management boards.
Earlier in the day, Harish Rao called on Union Environment minister Prakash Javadekar and urged him to accord environment clearances to projects like Pranahita-Chevella.
Source: The New Indian Express