HYDERABAD: The water balance at the Inchampalli Dam site on the Godavari basin for the proposed Godavari-Krishna Link Projects is not acceptable for the Telangana government, said Union Minister of State for Jal Shakti, Rattan Lal Kataria. He was responding to various questions raised in the Rajya Sabha on Monday regarding the status of river-linking projects in the country.
He, however, added that the National Water Development Agency (NWDA) had prepared a detailed project report (DPR) for the Godavari(Inchampalli/Janampet) and Cauvery (Grand Anicut) Link Project consisting of three links -- namely Godavari (Inchampalli/Janampet) and Krishna (Nagarjunasagar), Krishna (Nagarjunasagar) and Pennar (Somasila), Pennar (Somasila) and Cauvery (Grand Anicut).
After the completion of the report, the NWDA had sent it to the party states in March, 2019, said Katari.
Further, in response to an unstarred question raised by MP Anbumani Ramadoss, the Minister said that as per the draft DPR, the link project would be of benefit to about 9.38 lakh hectares of land in Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Of the seven states concerned, four states have furnished suggestions/comments on the draft DPR.
The Minister further added that the project would reach its implementation stage only after its DPR was prepared with the consensus of the states and requisite statutory clearances were obtained. “No project involving the inter-linking of rivers has reached the implementation stage yet,” he said.
Per capita water availability
The per capita water availability in the country has been reducing consistently and drastically. The average annual per capita water availability in the years 2001 and 2011 was pegged at 1,816 cubic metres and 1,545 cubic metres respectively. This may further reduce to 1,486 cubic metres in 2021. According to Rattan Lal Katari, the per capita water availability is reducing owing to the increase in population.
Responding to an unstarred question in the Rajya Sabha raised by TRS leader Banda Prakash, the Union Minister said that water being a State subject, steps for augmentation, conservation and efficient management of water resources were primarily being undertaken by the respective state governments. In order to supplement the efforts of the state governments, the Centre provides technical and financial assistance to them through various schemes and programmes, the Minister said.
States are owners of dams, says Union Min
Responding to another question raised by MP MV Rajeev Gowda, Katari clarified that the Dam Safety Bill, 2019, in no way sought to alter or dilute states’ established ownership of dams or their day-to-day roles in the operation and management of dams