MUMBAI: Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s diplomacy for over a year to resolve the water dispute with Maharashtra bore some fruits on Tuesday when he signed five MoUs with Maharashtra counterpart Devendra Fadnavis here on sharing water of Godavari and its tributaries.
As per the MoUs, the neighbouring states will build Medigadda barrage on the Godavari River, Tummadi Hatti on the Pranahita and Chanaka-Korata and two other barrages on the Penganga. Of the five barrages, Maharashtra will build projects at Rajapet and Penpahad while Telangana will build the remaining three projects.
The MoUs are believed to be historic as unlike other warring states both the states have reached to certain conclusion after sharing their views and studying each others’ objections on several key issues such as height of barrages and their storage capacity.
Such was the cordial relations between the two CMs that KCR extended an invitation to Fadnavis to visit Hyderabad to taste its delicious biryani after enjoying the Maharashtrian cuisine after exchanging the files of agreement.
1. Kaleswaram, a barrage at Rajapet on Penganga
2. Barrage between Chankha and Kovata
3. Barrage at Penpahad
4. Barrage at Tammadihatti on Pranahita
5. Barrage at Medigadda
The MoUs allow Telangana to take up the projects across Godavari and its tributaries on condition that there should be minimal or no submergence of villages in Maharashtra. The projects are expected to benefit both the states, particularly drought prone Telangana.
The Kaleswaram project, new avatar of Pranahita-Chavella lift irrigation project, will come up Kannepalli village in
Karimnagar district. It is aimed at irrigating 45,000 acres as well as drinking water to over 60 villages. Lower Penganga project on Penganga river, which is tributary of Godavari, will irrigate about 2,38,000 acres in Maharashtra and about 40,000 acres in Telangana.
The Lendi project coming up across the River Manjira, which is tributary to Godavari, is envisaged to irrigate 38,820 acres in Nanded district of Maharashtra and 27,710 acres in Nizamabad district ofTelangana.
Both the states have agreed to constitute an interstate board for joint irrigation projects. “This board is constituted to take decisions by mutual understanding for irrigation projects such as Lendi, Pranhita and Lower Painganga. The Chief Minister of Telangana has agreed to honour the concerns of Maharashtra,” Fadnavis said. KCR said that Telangana would ensure that there was no submergence in Maharashtra.
“Around 2000 to 4000 TMC water goes into the Sea at present. The Godavari water flowing below Bhadrachalam can be used by Andhra Pradesh,” he said.
He said that the MoUs have raised hopes of the people in Telangana. “We have to work to fulfill them (hopes). Water and employment are our priorities. The fight (between Maharashtra and united AP) was going on since long. Now we have settled the issue amicably at a time many states are wagging battles,” KCR said without naming anyone.
KCR also announced that his government will seek Maharashtra’s cooperation in other fields too including transport.
The visiting Chief Minister was accompanied by Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao, Irrigation Adviser R Vidyasagar Rao, Chief Secretary Rajiv Sharma and ministers Jogu Ramanna and Indra Karan Reddy.
The Maharashtra delegation comprised by Water Resources Minister Girish Mahajan, his deputy Vijay Shivtare and Principal Secretary for Water Resources Department Satish Gavai.