'Connecting River Linking Projects Will Benefit TN, Karnataka And AP': Abdul Rahman

Former Vellore MP Abdul Rahman has appealed to Uma Bharti, Union Minister for Water Resources, to give top priority for the revival of the Palar river.

Published: 12th August 2015 03:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th August 2015 03:27 AM   |  A+A-

VELLORE:  Former Vellore MP Abdul Rahman has appealed to Uma Bharti, Union Minister for Water Resources, to give top priority for the revival of the Palar river by combining two river linking projects in one go, which would benefit Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

In a letter addressed to the minister, Rahman feared that water extraction in the river basin had reached an alarming stage and if not contained would result in the river losing its subterranean nature.

According to Abdul Rahman, the river had dried up in an area of 17,871 square km in the three states with the highest of 57 per cent in Tamil Nadu followed by 26 per cent in Andhra Pradesh and 17 percent in Karnataka. Dwindling rainfall conditions in the past three decades have seriously affected Vellore and its bordering districts of Chittoor in AP and Kolar in Karnataka. Moreover uniform drought condition was prevailing in all the three districts. Hence a common plan was needed to revive this 348 km long river basin, he said.

While TN has prioritised the river linking project of Mahanadhi-Godhavari-Krishna-Palar-Cauvery, Rahman said the project, if implemented in its present version, would benefit only the lower Palar basin. The project should be altered and must start from the upper Palar region for the entire river to be rejuvenated, Rahman said.

“As such, the river link project envisages to bring water from these rivers to Chittoor town. The AP government already have plans to construct a reservoir across the Palar river at Kuppam area, which has been stalled by the TN government. By extending the canal from Chittoor to this point in Kuppam, the water could be drained into Palar to reach TN at Vaniyambadi so that the entire stretch would have surface flow. This arrangement would also rejuvenate the 32 km stretch of Palar in Kuppam area benefiting around 30,000 acres of land and 92 km stretch in Vellore district benefiting around 75,000 acres of land besides filling the water needs of both areas,” Rahman said.

Already Karnataka is planning to tap excess water from the west flowing Nethravati river in Northern Karnataka to feed Kolar district, which again could be extended to drain into Palar river. These two river link projects would ensure perennial water flow in Palar, thus giving a new lease of life to this basin in the three states in one go, he said.

“The union minister should convene a meeting of Chief Ministers of all three states and work out a joint plan at the earliest, he added. Once the water flow is ensured, the river could be cleansed from pollution caused by the leather tanneries. It would be a win-win situation for all three states while getting rid of the pollution issue permanently,” he pointed out.


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