VIJAYAWADA / ELURU : Prior to Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu’s proposed meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the Polavaram project issue, a delegation comprising water resources minister Devineni Umamaheswara Rao, his department officials and representatives of the contracting agencies will meet Union water resources minister Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi on Tuesday.
“We will discuss all the objections and other pressing issues related to Polavaram project in the meeting,’’ Devineni said after inspecting the Polavaram project works on Monday.
Reiterating that the Centre and AP government would complete the Polavaram project at any cost by 2019, Devineni said,”The government has called for the tenders for the works including that of spillways worth Rs1,395 crore and it will be finalised on December 22. The works will begin from December 28. Contracting agency Transstroy will construct the spillway works from 35th to 54th block.”
Stating that cofferdam works would also be completed in time, he said water will be released from the project through gravity by June 2018. Taking potshots at the Congress he said during the party’s rule of 10 years, Devineni said the Congress government had failed to solve the land acquisition problems and the burden fell on the TDP government which had to pay the compensation as per the provisions of the new land acquisition act, escalating the relief and rehabilitation cost to `33,000 crore.
Accusing YSRC chief YS Jaganmohan Reddy of obstructing the Polavaram project, he said that the YSRC MLAs were even yet to visit the project site. “If YSRC MLAs visit the site, they will know about the pace at which the project is being implemented,” he said.
YSRC hits back
Accusing the Chief Minister of busy with ‘his commercial agenda’, YSRC MLA G Srikanth Reddy alleged that ‘Naidu had converted the multipurpose (Polavaram) project into a contractors’ project for kickbacks.’ “Naidu has undertaken the project from the Centre only to make money. Now that the situation is getting tough for him, he is shifting the blame,” he said.