Andhra, Telangana agree for mechanism on river water sharing

New Delhi/Hyderabad, Sep 21 (IANS) The Apex Council on river water-sharing between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday decided to install telemetry system and constitute a joint committee to study availability of water.

Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti told reporters after the first meeting of the council in New Delhi that the report of the joint committee will be sent to tribunal to allocate water to the two states.

The first meeting of the council was attended by Uma Bharti, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu and his Telangana counterpart K. Chandrasekhar Rao.

The irrigation ministers and top officials from both the states and the Centre also attended the meeting, which lasted for over two hours.

The central minister said the meeting was held in a cordial atmosphere and there was agreement on three issues.

“Telemetry system will be installed wherever they want, for water gauging. Both states wanted this so that we know quantity of water in each river and how much is flowing into each state,” Bharti said.

It was also agreed that a joint committee, comprising of engineers from the two states and from the Central Water Commission, will be constituted to study availability of water in the river basin.

“The report of the joint committee will be sent to the tribunal with a request to allocate the water to the states so that they can go ahead with their respective projects,” Bharati added.

The Chief Ministers were not present during her media briefing.

She declined to answer more questions, saying all other issues will be decided by the officials of the two states.

During the meeting, both the Chief Minister presented their cases on projects on the Krishna and Godavari rivers.

The Centre constituted the Apex Council on the direction of the Supreme Court and in line with the provisions made in the A.P. Reorganisation Act, 2014.

The two Telugu states have been sparring over sharing of river waters.

Telangana alleged that Andhra was resorting to diversion of huge quantity of water from the Pothireddypadu head. Andhra objected to “illegal projects” like Palamuru-Ranga Reddy and Dindi being taken up by Telangana.

Telangana is also demanding a share in the Krishna water as compensation for Andhra Pradesh diverting Godavari water through the Pattiseema lift irrigation scheme.

–IANS

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