Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy assured the Polavaram affected villagers that water in the project nearing completion will be stored at full reservoir level (FRL) "only after paying the compensation to each and every family and fulfilling the Rehabilitation and Resettlement stipulations."
On Wednesday, Reddy was on the second day of his tour in the Andhra Pradesh districts affected by the recent Godavari floods.
“Our government is pursuing the central government on the R&R package and putting all efforts into getting the funds,” Reddy said while adding that several letters were sent to New Delhi and the issue was discussed in every meeting with higher officials.
The CM visited Koyuguru, Chatti villages in the Alluri Sitaramaraju district and Kannaigutta, Thirumalapuram, Narlavaram villages of Eluru district and interacted with flood-affected families.
During his tour of the Polavaram project and the submerged villages lying in both the districts, the Chief Minister said that the R&R package, costing over Rs 20,000 crore, has to be provided by the Centre.
“The amount is beyond our capacity. But the State government will pay compensation to project oustees if the central government fails to release the amount,” Reddy said.
The Centre already owes Rs 2,900 crore to the AP government under the R&R component.
CM said the water in Polavaram will first be filled up to 41.15 meters height, as the Central Water Commission would not approve filling the dam to its full capacity initially due to safety precautions.
“The reservoir will be fully filled only after three years and by then, everyone will be paid compensation,” Reddy said.
The CM also promised to construct houses for Polavaram displaced persons at the earliest.
During his visit, the CM announced that a new revenue division would be created with four Polavaram-submergence mandals - Chintoor, Nellipaka, Kunavaram, and VR Puram falling under the Alluri Sitarama Raju district.
After several women brought to his notice their houses were damaged due to the Godavari floods, the CM directed officials to enumerate such households and provide financial aid of Rs 10,000 to each of those families.