Telangana, AP spar over use of Krishna waters

Telangana, AP spar over use of Krishna waters

Tension escalated on Tuesday over the issue of Telangana continuing to use water from the Krishna river for thermal power generation at Srisailam

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This has drawn strong objection from Andhra Pradesh and warranted the deployment of police forces in the area.

Andhra Pradesh has urged the Telangana government to stop thermal power production at Srisailam as 6,000 cusec of water goes to waste everyday on being released into the Bay of Bengal. It had even sent a letter to the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) demanding that power production there be stopped immediately.

In protest, activists from the TRS, which is headed by Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, ransacked and torched furniture at the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) headquarters in the Nalgonda town of the state.

At other places, they also burnt effigies of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, who has sought the  KRMB to intervene as the storage level in the Srisailam reservoir reached 106.42 tmc feet.  The KRMB advised the Telangana government to ensure that the power production at Srisailam dam doesn’t cause depletion of the Krishna river water below the threshold-level needed for drinking and irrigation purposes.

The Board, in a letter to Telangana government, also suggested both the states that any water released from both Srisailam and Nagarjunasar dams will be made jointly by the superintendent engineer-level officials from both the governments, and reservoir status should be intimated to the Board on a daily basis.

Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh Irrigation Minister Devineni Umamaheswar Rao called his Telangana counterpart T Harish Rao to reach an agreement. The Andhra Pradesh government is committed to supplying 300 MW of power to help Telangana save its Kharif crop and reasserted the demand that thermal production at Srisailam must be stopped.

“We have been urging the Telangana government to save water at Srisailam or at Pulichintala. It is also not even allowing us to store water at Pulichintala,” Umamaheswar Rao  told media near Prakasam Barrage in Vijayawada on Tuesday.

“We are children of the same mother and we must share our problems. Let the irrigation secretaries talk. We are ready to give power to you (Telangana). You give water from the Krishna for our people,” he said.

Telangana Finance Minister Etela Rajender, however, has refused to relent, rationalising that his government had not violated any norms. “We are following what the erstwhile Andhra Pradesh government used to do,” Rajender said.

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