L&T team arrives in Medigadda

KLIS engineer-in-chief N Venkateshwarlu said the heavy inflow of water had caused the 19th pillar to sink.
Representational image of Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme (KLIS) (File Photo |EPS)
Representational image of Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme (KLIS) (File Photo |EPS)

BHUPALPALLY: A day after a pillar of the Lakshmi Barrage (Medigadda) of Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme reportedly sank, an expert team of L&T engineers from Delhi and Chennai arrived in the district on Sunday to carry out a technical assessment.

Late on Saturday, the engineering staff identified the sunken pillar and informed the higher authorities. KLIS engineer-in-chief N Venkateshwarlu said the heavy inflow of water had caused the 19th pillar to sink. The resultant damage to pillars 20 and 21 was relatively minor, he added. The on-site engineering team said miscreants may have caused the damage as they heard ‘a loud sound’, Venkateshwarlu said.

A statement by L&T said an expert technical team, along with state authorities, has been sent to assess the cause of the damage. Upon thorough assessment, the company would take action to repair the damage as soon as possible, it added.

Considering the upcoming Assembly elections, Jayashankar Bhupalpally Superintendent of Police (SP) Khare Kiran Prabhakar said special teams have been formed to investigate whether anti-social elements played a role in this incident.

Five gates of the barrage were opened to reduce the water inflow. Currently, the barrage is experiencing an inflow of 14,500 cusecs, with the outflow remaining similar to the inflow after the opening of five gates out of the total 85 in the barrage. The present water level at the barrage stands at 2.15 tmcft, lower than its capacity of 16 tmcft, said Venkateshwarlu. 

CJ’s intervention sought

The National Highway (NH) connecting Maharashtra and Telangana remained largely unaffected, with no major incidents reported. The nearby villages also narrowly escaped any significant damage, said officials.
Advocate Chikkudu Prabhakar urged the Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court to direct the State government to implement preventive measures to avert such untoward incidents.

Prabhakar implored the CJ to treat this matter as a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) with urgency and oversee its examination, emphasizing the need to safeguard the right to life by instructing the State government to take immediate action.

Manthani MLA D Sridhar Babu has made efforts to visit the Lakshmi Barrage, but he was denied permission by the police. He criticized the State government, alleging that the substantial funds allocated to the project were misused, and the poor quality of construction contributed to the pillar sinking. The MLA demanded that the Union government take action against Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao in the greater interest of the people of Telangana.

Previously, the project had encountered a similar issue due to heavy inflow, resulting in the inundation of 17 ‘Bahubali pump sets’ at the Kannepally pump house within the Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme (KLIS). The Lakshmi Barrage was constructed on the Godavari river and serves as a crucial link between the border villages of Ambatipally in Mahadevpur, Jayashankar Bhupalpally district, and Pochampally village in Sironcha, Maharashtra. It was completed in 2016 and inaugurated in 2019.

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