Varahi project to serve drinking water purpose too, says minister

Varahi project to serve drinking water purpose too, says minister

Kundapur and adjacent villages to get water with ADB funds

 Urban Development Minister Vinay Kumar Sorake said Varahi irrigation project would be extended to supply drinking water to Kundapur and adjacent villages at a cost of Rs 38 crore released by the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

Speaking after inaugurating the release of water from Varahi irrigation project for the summer crop, he said the government is committed to release water from the project, despite its delayed execution owing to the deemed forest issues. Nearly 60 per cent of the work is completed in two-and-a-half years. The project, started for irrigation purpose, would now serve the drinking water purpose too, he said.

He said the entire project aims at supplying water to 3,000 hectares of farm land every year in the initial stage.

Currently, the release of water will cover 2,400 hectares of irrigation crop. Besides, through the Souparnika Bridge-cum-barrage, the water would be released to 11 villages for drinking water purpose. The barrage would also provide water for another 1,730 hectares of farm land. The barrage is built near Yedrubailu at Alur village, he added.

Asserting that dream has come true after the prolonged project execution delayed up to 35 years, the minister said measures have been taken to sort out deemed forest issue for the remaining land, earmarked for the acquisition under the project.The government has sought the clearance for 278 hectares of land, while the Ministry of Environment has approved only 129.6 hectares of forest, he said.

Sorake said there would be severe shortage of water in the summer due to lack of rainfall.

Stating that a number of lift irrigation plans are underway, the minister said that the channel would begin at Haladi-76.  The survey works for the right bank canal, extending 24.31 km, is completed and the estimated area covers a majority of forest land, he added.

Sorake said the government has already dispatched the report on the proposed Kasturirangan recommendations, which demands the exemption of human habitat area under the purview of ecologically sensitive areas, he added.

Project executive engineer Venugopal said the works of Varahi diversion weir is completed. The 50 km work of the main channel, which extends to 63.63 km, is completed. Tender has been called for eight km and survey and acquisition work for the remaining 5.63 km is underway. There are 67 distributory channels and 10 distributory channels in the first 20 km, while there are 57 in the remaining areas of the left bank channel. Out of the proposed 2,400 hectares’ coverage, the water would be released to areas like Ulluru, Siddapura, Shankaranarayana, Haladi-76, Haladi-28, Hardalli-Mandalli, Halladi-Harkadi, Yadyadi-Mathyadi, Kukkunje, Billadi and Vandaru villages, he added.