Chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy has said bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh would be detrimental not only to Seemandhra but also Telangana.
Stating that the proposed T-state would face severe scarcity of irrigation water and power, Kiran Reddy said he was opposing the Centre’s decision to bifurcate the state considering the interests of the entire Andhra Pradesh, including Telangana.
Continuing his speech on the draft T-bill in the Assembly on Thursday, Kiran Reddy alleged that some forces had carried out a negative campaign that injustice was done to Telangana in AP.
“Unfortunately, successive chief ministers have not taken the matter seriously, resulting in growing hatred between the people of two regions. That is the reason I am laying the facts before the House in order to check the false propaganda,” he said.
The following is Kiran Reddy’s argument:
IRRIGATION SECTOR: There is a notion that Telangana was meted out a raw deal in irrigation sector. I want to dispel the idea that Seemandhra CMs did injustice to Telangana.
In 1956, irrigation water was provided to AP to about 62 percent of the area; in Rayalaseema it was 12.3 percent and in Telangana 25 percent.
From 1956 till date, the ayacut created in Andhra region was 40.96 percent, in Rayalaseema 13.36 percent and Telangana 45.68 percent.
Of the total amount spent on irrigation, `31,360 crore (39.5 percent) was spent in Andhra, `25,855 crore (25.5 percent) in Rayalaseema and `43,150 crore (43.5 percent) in Telangana. From 1984 till now, the government spent `85,000 crore on irrigation, of which around 46 percent was spent in Telangana.
If the state is divided, Telangana will become an upper riparian state. I have laid foundation stones for several irrigation projects, which will not get water, post-bifrucation. We have to still spend `12,700 crore on Telangana projects, which would otherwise be rendered useless.
In united state, there is possibility that water could be diverted from region to another depending upon need. When there was lack of water for Krishna delta last year, we have diverted there 60 tmc from Munneru and Paleru.
When around nine lakh acres of ayacut in Godavari delta was about to dry up for want of just 1.2 tmc, we diverted water from Sileru and saved the crops in the last 15 days of the season. We have also lifted water from Krishna and supplied it to Nalgonda farmers. Diversion of water from one area to another was possible as we are one state.
If the state is divided and the Central government takes over control of rivers, diversion of water is not possible in this manner. When there was heavy flood to Srisailam, the entire administration worked as one team and saved the dam.
If the state is divided and the Centre takes control of water, collectors, technicians and officials will not be under one administration. Thus, water management will lead to several problems. Unified control over river waters will help both the regions.
Power and irrigation are interlinked in the state. We have to maintain a certain level at Srisailam to supply water to different areas and also generate 1,670 mw power. Not maintaining the necessary water level at Srisailam will cause problems to all regions and also in generation of power also.
We have reached an agreement with Maharashtra over the construction of Pranahita-Chevella project. No Seemandhra person talked against Pranahita-Chevella. But, why there should be objection to Polavaram project? There are problems with submergence with Orissa and Chattisgarh for Polavaram. If the state is divided, there will be a problem with Telangana too.
Around 42,000 acres in 205 villages will be submerged in Khammam district and 30,000 families displaced.
Telangana needs 86 percent of the total lift irrigation schemes in the state. There is a shortage of coal and gas. How will the lift schemes in Telangana get power once the state is divided? In other states, rivers flow from one state to another. But, after bifurcation of AP, Krishna and Godavari rivers will become the boundaries in between the two states.
Telangana farmers given more POWER subsidy than Seemandhras
The share of Telangana farmers in power subsidy is more than that of farmers in Seemandhra. As per 2012 statistics, there were 17 lakh borewells in Telangana and 13 lakh in Seemandhra. The government has spent `33,000 crore on free power. Of that amount, `19,377 crore was spent in Telangana. This shows Telangana farmers have availed 57 percent of total power subsidy. If the state is divided, it will be difficult to provide the same subsidy to Telangana as there is no sufficient electricity generation in the region. Apart from this, Telangana will face as much as 50 percent shortage of power after bifurcation. TRS is repeatedly alleging that Singareni coal is transported to Seemandhra in violation of rules. But, there is no truth in this allegation as the Centre has the power to allocate coal to states. About 185.60 lakh tonne of coal was allocated to projects in Telangana, 38.80 lakh tonne to Rayalaseema and not a single tonne to Andhra.
TRS members sport FLOWERS IN their EARS in ridicule
When the chief minister was trying to say bifurcation will be detrimental to the interests of Telangana, TRS and BJP members stormed into the well of the House several times, alleging that Kiran Reddy was quoting wrong figures. Some TRS members tried to ridicule his speech by keeping flowers in their ears. The chief minister reacted saying the TRS leaders have already put flowers in the ears of Telangana people. At one point, Kiran Reddy lost his cool and lambasted TRS leader T Harish Rao, saying, “Hairsh, hold your tongue. You are a senior member. You should not behave in the House as you like.” Around 3.55 pm, the Speaker adjourned the House for a while as TRS and BJP members continued to disrupt the proceedings, saying they had not been given opportunity to counter the argument of Kiran Reddy.