Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Friday instructed Irrigation Department officials to evolve a comprehensive strategy to maintain the canal systems for coping with the continuous flow of water from projects in Telangana, which hitherto was a drought-prone region.
“Be prepared in all aspects of maintenance of barrages, reservoirs, canals, distributaries and sluices,” the Chief Minister said at a high level review meeting at Pragathi Bhavan to discuss a comprehensive strategy in the context of lifting water from the Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme from July.
“Telangana has been a drought-prone region till recently. Water for irrigation was available only through the Sri Ram Sagar project and other canals just once in three-four years and that too in trickles. There was no maintenance of canal systems to divert water to agriculture fields, but the situation completely changed now,” Chandrashekhar Rao said.
He said water would be available in abundance from the Godavari through Pranahitha irrespective of the quantum of rainfall. Lifting water through the Kaleshwaram project will commence from July, when water would be pumped from Medigadda to Sundilla, and onwards to Mid Manair, and through Annaram to Yellampally, SRSP project, Mallanna Sagar and up to Kondapochamma Sagar, the Chief Minister said.
Stating that Irrigation Department officials would have to be prepared to carry out this exercise, the Chief Minister said Mid Manair, Lower Manair, Yellampally and SRSP reservoirs would be filled to capacity. “The gates and sluices of these reservoirs have to be thoroughly examined and the required repair works should be taken up on a war-footing,” he said, adding that reservoir gates should be maintained in such a manner that they can be operated as and when required.
Instructing the officials to ensure that the flood flow canal, Kakatiya, Lakshmi, Saraswathi, Gutpha and Alisagar canals are kept ready, he said thorough inspection of the sluices, distributaries and regulators of these canals should be carried out and the required repair works should be taken up within the next 20 days on a war-footing to ensure that they are ready for use. The required funds would be released immediately, he said.
Personnel from the lowest to the highest level should be deployed to supervise water flow and diversion works, and the entire canal system should be streamlined in all aspects to cope with the water flow, he said. “Since the water flow in the canals will be to its full capacity, the bunds on either side of the canals should be strengthened and maintained,” he said, adding that a workshop should be organised for Irrigation Department engineers as also to finalise the strategy.
Observing that there may be some teething problem during the process of lifting water from Medigadda and its outflow into the reservoirs, the Chief Minister said necessary steps should be taken to overcome such issues. “Minor issues arising out of diversion of water from barrages to reservoirs and tanks should be overcome from time to time. It may take some time for the flow of water from the barrages to reach reservoirs and from reservoirs to agriculture fields. Till then, care needs to be taken and where ever necessary repairs are required, they should be taken up for proper maintenance,” the Chief Minister said.
Chief Secretary SK Joshi, Principal Finance Secretary Ramakrishna Rao, CMO Secretary Smitha Sabharwal, Irrigation ENCs Muralidhar and Hareram, CEs Khalender and Shanker, and others participated in the meeting.