Polavaram project will not hit Bhadrachalam: Jal Shakti Ministry

Union Ministry holds meet with Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Telangana & AP to address concerns over irrigation project

Published: 30th September 2022 05:35 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th September 2022 05:35 AM   |  A+A-

Polavaram Project. (Photo | Express)

Polavaram Project. (Photo | Express)

By Express News Service

VIJAYAWADA: In a bid to allay Telangana’s fears that the Polavaram project in Andhra Pradesh would submerge the temple town of Bhadrachalam, the Ministry of Jal Shakti on Thursday stated that such a situation would not arise. Telangana has been repeatedly saying that Bhadrachalam in that State would be in perennial trouble once the irrigation project on the River Godavari is completed.

The MoJS made the clarification at a virtual meeting it convened with the water resources department officials of the four stakeholder States: AP, Telangana, Odisha and Chhattisgarh. The meeting was held on a Supreme Court directive to clear the doubts regarding the national project. According to senior officials, MoJS heard objections raised by Telangana, Odisha and Chhattisgarh during the preliminary meeting.
 
Sources said the MoJS rejected Telangana’s request for a resurvey of the impact of Godavari’s backwaters, saying there was no threat of Bhadrachalam getting flooded as being reported.

The MoJS maintained that surveys had been conducted twice already - in 2009 and again in 2011.
 It clarified that there was no scope for any submergence as being apprehended by the other three States.
Officials of the AP Water Resources Department reiterated that the Polavaram project has been taken up only after receiving all clearances. They said model studies on the possible impact of backwaters had found no threat to Bhadrachalam as being projected by Telangana.

Meanwhile, the Polavaram Project Authority (PPA) officials explained that while the Godavari River Water Disputes Tribunal had recommended a spillway with a release capacity of 36 lakh cusescs, a structure with a release capacity of 50 lakh cusecs was constructed.

“The project is being constructed as per the designs approved by the Centre. Though we have asked Odisha and Chhattisgarh to cooperate with the State for a joint survey on the submergence and flood bank protection walls, Odisha is not coming forward,” the PPA officials reportedly said. The Ministry would hold another meeting in New Delhi on October 7 with the technical details of backwaters’ survey.



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