A ministry official said that initially 300 TMC ft water would be transferred from the Godavari to the Polavaram project through Nagarjuna Sagar dam and to river Krishna.
The Centre has prioritised a project to transfer surplus water of Indravati river in Maharashtra and backwater of Andhra’s Polavaram dam to Cauvery to resolve the water woes in the two states along with Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari today said. Gadkari also laid emphasis on water conservation by various means and wherever possible. “The surplus water of Indravati (in Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli district), which meets Godavari, will be taken to Kaleshwaram dam. From there it will be transferred to two other dams and again from there it will be pumped to the tail end of Cauvery,” Water Resources Minister Gadkari said. He made the remarks while addressing an event organised by FICCI to mark ‘World Water Day’ here. Gadkari added that backwater of Polavaram dam will be channelled into Krishna river, from there to Pennar river (in Karnataka) and again from there to Cauvery.
“So, we will be able to nearly solve the water problems of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu. There will be no dispute,” he added. The minister said that around 3000 TMC ft of the Godavari’s water flows into the sea. Socio-economic changes can be attained even if 1000 TMC ft of it is held and transferred to the water-scarce region, Gadkari said. A ministry official said that initially 300 TMC ft water would be transferred from the Godavari to the Polavaram project through Nagarjuna Sagar dam and to river Krishna. After that water will be conveyed to Somasila dam (in Andhra Pradesh) on the Pennar and from there it will be taken to the Grand Anicut (in Tamil Nadu) on river Cauvery, the official added. The water is expected to be transferred via pipes, the official said and added around 100 TMC ft can be carried to the Cauvery. Gadkari said that the government has planned 30 river linking programmes. Out of these, work on five programme will be initiated this year itself he added.
Ken-Betwa river inter-linking project, which will benefit Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, figures among the projects to be launched. Gadkari also talked about undertaking a pilot desalination plant (to be installed on scrapped ship) in Tamil Nadu’s Tuticorin to gain potable water at Rs 5 paise per litre. “It will be a cost-effective, technology-based intervention, which will save water while fulfilling needs. We need to conserve water wherever possible with the help of the government and people,” he added.