Kumram Bheem Asifabad: Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao, displeased over the sluggish pace of work on the prestigious Rs 425-crore Kumram Bheem Irrigation Project, took irrigation and revenue officials to task on Wednesday, and directed them to speed up the process to ensure supply of irrigation water to farmers during the kharif season in June.
Censuring them for failing to execute the works during a review meeting at the dam site, the minister said construction of the left canal should be completed by June. The project is coming up across Peddavagu at Ada village of Asifabad mandal in the district.
Harish Rao was particularly upset when engineers from the irrigation department cited petty issues for the slow pace of progress in construction of the canals. He found fault with them when he was told that work on the the 24-km canals was yet to be taken up. “Whose inefficiency is this? Do you visit the field or not?”, he asked executive engineer Badrinarayana, adding: “I will not tolerate sluggishness in these works.”
The minister was also unhappy with the slow pace in land acquisition for canals, distributaries and other components. Rao enquired about the number of constructions to be taken up under the project, and was upset when land acquisition officer of the project, Pandurangam, told him that 983 constructions were completed, against the total 1,481.
Rao directed the officials concerned to expedite the land acquisition under the Central Land Acquisition Act, 2013, if there were any impediments. He advised them to deposit funds pertaining to compensation of lands with courts wherever farmers were not willing to part with their lands.
The minister also told the district authorities to conduct review meetings every week and report at regular intervals. He also urged the public representatives in the area to involve themselves in convincing the farmers to give their lands for the project.
The minister was joined by Endowment Minister A Indrakaran Reddy, Adilabad MP Godam Nagesh, Legislators Kova Laxmi and Koneru Konappa and MLC Puranam Satheesh Kumar. Asifabad Collector M. Champalal, ITDA project officer R V Karnan and irrigation chief engineer Bhagavanth Rao were among the officials who attended the review meeting.