HYDERABAD: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the joint committee constituted to look into the environmental violations in the Palamuru- Rangareddy Lift Irrigation Scheme (PRLIS) project, to conduct another inspection of lakes in the area and check the impact of mining after the water levels come down in the months of April-May.
The direction comes after the complainant, D Chandramouleswara Reddy, a farmer from Kadapa, raised objections with the joint committee’s report on the issue. The committee, in its report submitted after visiting the minor irrigation tanks in September last year, maintained that no illegal mining activities were taking place and only protective works were being undertaken.
The PRLIS project is conceived as an irrigation scheme to lift 90 tmcft out of which the drinking water component is only of 7.15 tmcft. The committee had concluded that Telangana took up irrigation works in the project, instead of permitted drinking water component works.
The complainant raised objections to the committee report as to why no rehabilitation or resettlement options were given to the displaced people even after confirming that there were violations with regard to the environmental laws. Furthermore, the complainant objected to the use of outdated documents from 2017 by the joint committee, to verify the violations occurring in 2021.
The NGT has sought another report from the committee to further assess the matter and directed the panel members to wait until summer months to recheck for illegal mining signs in the water bodies.The NGT constituted the panel following a petition filed by Chandramouleswara Reddy,, along with other farmers from Rayalaseema, Prakasam, Guntur and Krishna districts.