HYDERABAD: Even after the onset of the monsoon, there is no water in all the major irrigation projects across the Krishna River. All the projects including Almatti dam in Karnataka are empty now.
The available water at Almatti dam was just 11 tmcft on Monday. Only if the dam is full will water reach Srisailam project, which will address the needs of the Telugu speaking states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, in one way or other.
Interestingly, despite lack of sufficient water in irrigation projects across the Krishna River, AP and TS are not facing water scarcity for agricultural operations at present. There are several reasons for this.
As far as Andhra is concerned, diversion of Godavari water to Krishna river through Pattiseema project has provided succour to the farming community in the Krishna delta of the state. The farmers of Krishna delta, who earlier used to wait till Almatti dam was filled and water was released from Almatti to Srisailam project for agriculture operations, are now getting water for the sowing season because of Pattiseema project.
AP chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu on Sunday released water from Krishna barrage for agriculture operations. Thus, the Krishna delta, a more than 100-year-old irrigation system, is getting water in June itself for the first time.In Telangana too, there is no initial problem for irrigation water this year. Due to heavy rains in Rabi season last year, some projects like Singur have water for agriculture needs in Kharif season.Irrigation minister T Harish Rao directed the officials to release water, from wherever it is available, to farmers in June itself.
“Tail to Head” water release practice, which was introduced in Peddapally area by the Telangana irrigation officials last year, has yielded desired results. Thus, irrigation minister Harish Rao directed the officials to implement the same system at all projects and canals this year to provide irrigation water to agricultural fields.
Under the tail to head system, officials will release water to tail end farmers first. The officials will provide water to the farmers at the beginning of the project or canal in the last. This novel practice would ensure water to tail end farmers and reduce the gap ayacut considerably.