VIJAYAWADA: Retired irrigation engineer M Subbarayudu, who played a significant role in designing several irrigation projects in the State, suggests alternatives to Joladarasi and Rajoli reservoirs, for stabilisation of Kurnool Cuddapah Canal (KC Canal) ayacut. He says the government, which is financially constrained, can take up the plan
In a letter addressed to Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy in the last week of May, the 76-year-old irrigation expert submitted his proposal, which will negate the need for acquiring land from farmers and avoid submergence of cultivable lands.
The proposed Mallikarjuna Reservoir and Kadapa Avadhoota Swamy Reservoir as alternatives to Joladarasi and Rajoli are designed to hold 14 TMC of water, which is more than three times the combined capacity Joladarasi and Rajoli projects (3.75 TMC).
Both Joladarsi and Rajoli reservoirs were proposed on Kundu river in 2008 to stabilise the ayacut under KC canal, which is 2.65 lakh acres. Kundu is known as the sorrow of Nandyal, as it inundates Nandyal during the monsoon.
Joldarasi was proposed with a capacity of 0.8 TMC and it requires 1,992 acres and one village will be submerged. Rajoli is proposed with a capacity of 2.95 TMC and it requires 9,286 acres of which 7,386 are patta lands. A total nine villages - four in Kurnool and five in Kadapa - will be submerged.
People from all these villages will be displaced and have to be rehabilitated and as per historical records, these villages on the banks of Kundu river were in existence since the era of Kakatiyas. Further, these villages are under Ayacut of either KCC or SRBC or Mylavaram Reservoir North Canal.
Subbarayudu says the Rajoli and Joladarasi Reservoirs disturb the lives of thousands of people and rehabilitating them is not an easy task. "Further, there will be legal hurdles in land acquisition and resettlement, which might take several years to resolve," he says.
As per his alternate proposal Mallikarjuna Reservoir, the ridge in Midthur mandal of Kurnool district, bifurcates Tungabhadra sub-basin of Krishna basin and Kundu sub-basin of Penna basin.
In Midthur mandal across Kundu river, a dam with a full reservoir level (FRL) of 306 metres and storage capacity of 7 TMC can be constructed. "Most importantly, it controls the flood and saves Nandyal, thus saving on the costs of flood protection walls and bunds," he explains.
It will be able to create more ayacut and the flood water of Kundu can be shared to tracts of Rayalaseema which are in higher contour than Galeru Nagari Sujala Sravanthi Project (GNSS) alignment. As it comes under the Penna basin, inter-state disputes will not arise. The new proposal will not hinder the drinking water supply to Proddatur town.
Another project proposed by Subbarayudu is Kadapa Avadutha Swamy Reservoir in a rocky terrain upstream GNSS and Srisailam Right Bank (SRB) canal to Gandikota and Mylavaram reservoirs with a capacity of 7 TMC with FRL of 260 metres.
The reservoir can be filled by lifting water from GNSS. It will facilitate supply of water to Jammalamadugu and Proddatur by gravity and meet industrial needs of YSR district. Estimated cost of these projects is Rs 2,400 crore and cost per TMC will be less compared to Jaladorasi and Rajoli projects.