Hyderabad : The Telangana government has decided to protect the rights of the state in the Godavari and Krishna river waters at any cost.
A high-level meeting chaired by Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao on Thursday unanimously decided that there was no question of losing even a single drop of water and resolved that the state government is ready to fight for its rights to any extent.
The meeting discussed the letter written by Union Water Resources Secretary M.P. Singh to the state government to express its opinion on convening the Water Resources Ministry Apex Council meeting on August 5 to resolve the water disputes between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
The meeting suggested to the Chief Secretary to write a letter to the Centre to have the Apex Council meeting after August 20.
According to the Chief Minister's Office (CMO), the meeting felt that the working of the Union Water Resources Ministry in finding a solution to the water disputes between the two states is "almost funny" and it expressed its dissatisfaction over the matter.
Several participants in the meeting felt that the Centre failed miserably in ensuring proper sharing of waters between the two states. "In case, there are no water disputes between the two states, water sharing should be done under the Union Water Resources Ministry. If there are disputes, the responsibility to resolve the disputes should be entrusted to the Tribunal. The Telangana state had been requesting that, since there are water disputes between the two states, the responsibility to resolve them should be handed over to the Tribunal."
The meeting strongly condemned the way the Water Resources Ministry turned a deaf ear to the Telangana government's requests. The meeting felt that the Central ministry at least now should leave this "deplorable behaviour". There was anguish expressed in the meeting that it was due to the irresponsible behaviour of the Centre that both the states were paying a heavy price.
The meeting has unanimously resolved that projects like Palamuru-Rangareddy, and Dindi Lift Irrigation Scheme, aimed at supplying irrigation water to Mahabubnagar, Rangareddy, and Nalgonda districts, which were subjected to "gross injustices" during the united Andhra Pradesh rule, should be completed on a top priority basis.
Meanwhile, the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) has instructed the Andhra Pradesh government to stop the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme forthwith. It also found fault with the Andhra government for granting administrative sanction to the construction of new projects on the Krishna River.
The Board also warned Andhra that it can't go forward with the regard to construction of the projects without taking permission from the Central Water Commission (CWC).
The Telangana government had lodged a complaint with the KRMB stating that proposed Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme to divert Krishna water from the Srisailam Project was in violation of the AP State Reorganisation Act. Against this backdrop, the KRMB in its response clearly stated that the Andhra government can't construct projects illegally.