Amaravati: The Andhra Pradesh government is contemplating to take up the interlinking of Godavari and Pennar rivers. The project has an estimated cost of Rs 80,000 crore and will enable storage of about 1500 thousand million cubic feet (tmcft) of water.
WAPCOS, earlier known as Water and Power Consultancy Services Limited, has prepared a detailed project report and submitted it to Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu here on Friday.
A communiqué from the Chief Minister’s office said Naidu would make a presentation on the Godavari-Pennar inter-linking project to Union Water Resources Minister Nitin Gadkari when the latter visit’s the State on December 23.
“The Godavari-Pennar integration project will facilitate supply of drinking water to the four parched Rayalaseema districts as well as Prakasam and SPS Nellore districts besides ensuring water for irrigation and industrial needs,” the communiqué said.
It added that in all 320 tmcft of Godavari surplus water could be diverted to Pennar through a lift scheme, which would require 3,625 MW of electricity. As much as 7,000 acres of forest land and 25,000 acres of other land would have to be acquired to complete the Godavari-Pennar inter-linking project, the communiqué stated. It said that two tunnels have to be dug between the (under-construction) Polavaram project and Prakasam Barrage while a reservoir has to be built at Bollapalli.
Canals stretching to a length of 701 km also need to be built between Polavaram and Sangam Barrage covering at least five districts, it said. While a hydrographic survey for the project has been completed, the geo-technical investigation is being carried out. CM Naidu asked officials of the State Water Resources Department to take up the Godavari-Pennar project in a phased manner to achieve quick results.
He also asked them to explore how much water from Godavari could be diverted to Pennar using the current network of canals and reservoirs. “Once the inter-linking of these rivers is completed, we can store 1,500 tmcft of water,” the Chief Minister added.
Meanwhile, the Chief Minister has come up with another proposal to build a new barrage on river Krishna midstream of the existing KL Rao Sagar and Prakasam Barrage. It is estimated that this project would cost Rs 3,278 crore and could be completed in three years.
The State government boasts of having completed the “first-ever” river inter-linking project by diverting Godavari water into river Krishna through the controversial Pattisam lift scheme, which the CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General) found fault.