VIJAYAWADA: Members of the Central committee on rehabilitation and resettlement on Polavaram project, met Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu at his chambers in the Assembly on Wednesday.
The committee members, who had visited the Polavaram site in the last two days, expressed their satisfaction over the rehabilitation and resettlement plan for the villagers under the multi-crore project area. “The completion of the Polavaram is my ultimate life goal,” Naidu told the members during the one-hour interaction.
The committee members — its chairman and Central Tribal Welfare Ministry Secretary Leeena Nair and members secretary of Central Water Resource Ministry G Latha Krishna Rao, Chief Engineer Kachodiya, Godavari Tribunal Chairman S K Srivastava and Central Water Board Member Sanjay Singh — visited three Polavaram-affected villages to check the rehabilitation package implementation and cost matters.
The members said the R&R package provided by the State government offers good houses to accommodate all the displaced persons. The Chief Minister said the reports on land acquisition, compensation and rehabilitation would be submitted to the Centre along with the master plan for the Godavari-Penna-Kaveri linking project.
On the occasion, the CM expressed hope that the Centre will release the project funds faster.
“It is not good to delay the progress of the project as there are many obstacles already. And some forces are trying to provoke the affected villagers. We need more cooperation from the Centre. We are yet to receive the promised Special Package from the Centre,” Naidu said. “The bifurcation of the State was an unjust and sudden move. The State was formed even without a capital city. Only with the Centre’s full support, the State can progress,” Naidu said.
Later, the Chief Minister informed the Assembly about the details of his meeting with the panel. Speaking in the Assembly during a short discussion, Naidu said Polavaram is the lifeline of the State. He reminded members of the issue regarding the merging of flood prone areas into AP after bifurcation.
Despite hurdles, the project is going on at a fast pace, he said. He stated that he had visited the Polavaram project area at least 20 times till now.
He said that the cost of project has been spent on increased to over `58,000 crore. `12,567 crore has been spent on the project so far in which the central funds are `4,329 crores. The Polavaram head works and skill way works were completed by 75%, the diaphragm works by 47% and mud works 72%. As many as 60,258 acres of land is yet to be acquired for Polavaram project. Saying that the Centre is not properly allotting funds, though it granted permission for 16 projects, the CM said it should at least concentrate on the grants for Polavaram.
For the first time, Polavaram virtual inspection was held in the AP Assembly. Project Engineering officer explained the situation of Polavaram through real time virtual inspection in the House.