Tension continues at irrigation projects on border with Telangana state, as the Telangana continued power generation despite pleas of the Andhra Pradesh government to stop the generation keeping in view the existing low water levels. Both the states have deployed police forces at the projects.
Tension was palpable at the power stations since Wednesday evening itself as Telangana deployed Special Protection Force personnel at Pulichintala, Srisailam, Jurala and Nagarjunasagar projects to prevent any untoward incidents and closed dam sites for vehicular and tourist movement. In a counter move, AP too deployed police force at Pulichintala dam on its territory.
The crux of the water dispute between the two States is the allegation by the Andhra Pradesh government that Telangana is drawing Krishna river water from the Srisailam, Nagarjuna Sagar and Pulichintala projects for hydel power generation without obtaining clearances from the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB).
The Andhra Pradesh government says the operation and maintenance of the Srisailam and Pulichintala projects, and the Prakasam barrage, are in its purview, whereas the Nagarjuna Sagar and Jurala projects are under the control of Telangana.
By an order issued on May 5 last year, the Andhra Pradesh government had given administrative sanction for the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme (RLIS) to lift 3 thousand million cubic feet (tmc ft) water daily from the Srisailam reservoir, which was to be carried through the Srisailam Right Main Canal (SRMC) to meet the requirements of the Rayalaseema region of the State. The carrying capacity of the canal was to be enhanced from 44,000 cusecs to 88,000 cusecs to absorb the extra load. The total estimated value of works mentioned in the order was ₹6,829 crore.
Telangana police denied entry to some officials from AP, including revenue and irrigation officials from Guntur, at Macherla on Andhra border, who wanted to give a letter to Telangana Genco officials asking to stop hydel power generation from units at Pulichintala and Nagarjunasagar.
On top of it, the Telangana government took up hydel generation by the discharge of water at four projects along the course of the river — Jurala, Srisailam, Nagarjuna Sagar and Pulichintala — which touched 34.16 million units on July 1. This was protested by the Andhra Pradesh government on the ground that the generation, particularly at Srisailam, where the output was 12.97 million units, would badly affect flows to the RLIS.