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Telangana Irrigation Minister Uttam Kumar Reddy holds review meeting with senior officials
• Telagnana Govt will seek 10 TMC of Krishna water from Karnataka

Hyderabad, January 13: Irrigation and Civil Supplies Minister Capt N Uttam Kumar Reddy stated that the Congress Government in Telangana is set to optimize spending on irrigation projects, aiming to create a new ayacut of approximately 5 lakh acres by the end of this year.

Uttam Kumar Reddy made these remarks during a media briefing following a review meeting with officials from the Irrigation Department at Jalasoudha on Saturday.

In his interaction with the media, Uttam Kumar Reddy highlighted that the review meeting exposed significant wasteful and unproductive expenditure during the previous BRS government. Consequently, he emphasized the need for the present government to prioritize optimal expenditure, focusing on maximizing new ayacut under irrigation. He further stressed that preference would be given to projects capable of generating new ayacut swiftly.

“We discussed projects and expenditure during the meeting, identifying those where new ayacuts can be generated within 6 months and within one year. We categorized the time frames for new ayacut creation, with a decision to maximize expenditure on projects achieving this goal within six months to one year. Our target for this calendar year, by December 2024, is to create new ayacuts spanning 4.5 to 5 lakh acres,” he asserted.

Uttam Kumar Reddy mentioned the initiation of a vigilance enquiry into the Medigadda barrage collapse and assured that those responsible would be held accountable. He also disclosed Chief Minister A Revanth Reddy’s letter to the Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court, urging the appointment of a sitting judge for a judicial inquiry into the Kaleshwaram project.

Addressing the issue of water rights, the Irrigation Minister affirmed the State Government’s commitment to safeguard Telangana’s water rights. He expressed openness to productive discussions with neighboring states and the Central Government.

“Recently, Chief Minister and I met with Central Minister for Water Resources Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, seeking national project status for the Palamuru Rangareddy Lift Irrigation Scheme. Though the Union Minister clarified the absence of a specific scheme for national project status, he assured funding for the Palamuru Rangareddy under different Central Government schemes,” he said adding that a proposal would be sent this week to the Government of India for funding of the project as assured by Union Minister minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat.

Responding to another query, Uttam Kumar Reddy criticized former Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao for changing the Ambedkar Pranahita Chevella project to the Kaleshwaram project. He argued that the original project would have created a new ayacut of 16 lakh acres at one-fourth the cost of Kaleshwaram. He lamented KCR’s alleged blunders in irrigation projects, asserting that the people of Telangana would bear the adverse consequences for generations.

Uttam Kumar Reddy reiterated the Congress Government’s commitment to creating new ayacuts expeditiously at optimal expenditure.

He also announced the government’s plan to desilt all water tanks across Telangana State during the summer. In light of the current water scarcity, he said a delegation, led by Chief Minister Revanth Reddy, will visit Karnataka to seek 10 TMC of Krishna water to meet the upcoming drinking water needs. (eom)

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