Andhra releases water from Nagarjunasagar Dam amid Telangana friction

"This is a drought year and we are left with no option but to take control of our facilities in our own territory," said an AP irrigation officer.

Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh irrigation officials opened one gate of the Nagarjunasagar Dam on Thursday to meet the drinking water needs of the state, an official said, which led to some friction with their Telangana counterparts.

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Engineer-in-Chief (Irrigation) C Narayana Reddy told PTI that Andhra Pradesh officials had no other option but to open the gate to release 3,000 cusecs of water as Telangana has been allegedly creating hindrances over the past nine years.

“This is a drought year and we are left with no option but to take control of our facilities in our own territory,” said Reddy, adding that the dam gate was opened around 10 am.

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According to the EIC, Telangana officials are allegedly not allowing Andhra Pradesh officials to even enter the dam to conduct inspections.

Moreover, he alleged that they established four checkposts in Andhra Pradesh territory and termed it unwarranted as one state government cannot go into another state and handle checkposts.

Reddy alleged that Telangana officials have been executing such activities forcibly.
“To avoid friction between the states, we were holding ourselves back but the menace has reached a peak. They were not letting us do even timely release of water for drinking needs,” he said.

Reddy observed that Telangana has not only trespassed to handle irrigation installations in Andhra Pradesh territory but is also allegedly controlling all the release points to Andhra Pradesh.

“The problem is that they have presumed that Nagarjunasagar Dam is under their control and they have trespassed into our territory on the right bank,” he said.

According to the irrigation official, the central line of Krishna river is the boundary between both the states, with the jurisdiction of the left side falling into Telangana and the right side Andhra Pradesh.

He said that on the right side the right main canal has a powerhouse and a head regulator for release of water to exclusively cater to the needs of Andhra Pradesh.

Similarly, the left bank of the river houses Telangana’s installations which fall in its territory and is handled by it, Reddy added.

Further, he said 13 gates of the 26-gate spillway fall into Telangana’s jurisdiction and the remaining 13 into Andhra Pradesh’s.

However, he alleged that Telangana authorities did not stop within their facilities and installations but also encroached on Andhra Pradesh side as well.

“For the past nine years, we have been asking several authorities in Telangana to hand over control to abide by the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) orders, but that is not happening,” he said.

Though Andhra Pradesh has its rightful allocations, the EIC said the state is having to beg and request Telangana to be able to operate its own irrigation installations.

In the wake of these developments, he said that Andhra Pradesh officials have decided to restore the state’s authority to itself, which also falls within its territory and nothing beyond.

He said only 3,000 cusecs of water is being released now, a quantum which has been approved by KRMB.
Reddy added that the irrigation department has also given a representation to the police department to enable them to control their own (Andhra Pradesh’s) dam installations.

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