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One lakh acres may submerge under Polavaram: Report

HYDERABAD: Around one lakh acres would submerge under the backwaters of Polavaram, besides Bhadrachalam and Parnasala, which were significant places for not only Telangana, but also for the country and the religion, Special Chief Secretary, Irrigation, Rajat Kumar said on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters here, Rajat Kumar said: “We want protection for Bhadrachalam”.

Stating that the State government has written letters to the Centre and Godavari River Management Board (GRMB) on several occasions over the backwaters issue, he reiterated the State government’s demand to carry out backwater impact study carefully to assess the likely submergence of Bhadrachalam.

“We have also written to GRMB. But, we are not at all satisfied with its reply as we have our concerns over the submergence,” Rajat Kumar said.The Central government said that the issue could be resolved. “But, it remains unresolved and we want a careful study on the impact of backwaters of Polavaram on Bhadrachalam,” he said.

“I am not saying that the recent floods at Bhadrachalam were due Polavaram. Yet, we have our own concerns and need a fresh study on the impact of backwaters,” he said.Earlier in the day, Rajat Kumar held a meeting with officials at Jal Soudha to study the impact of Godavari floods in the State.

“We are engaging a consultancy to carry out the study on the impact of flood all along the Godavari course, especially at Kadam, SRSP, Kaleshwaram and Bhadrachalam. The consultancy will submit its report in 10 days time. Then, the State government will take further steps to protect the people, like constructing or increasing the flood banks,” Rajat Kumar said.

On the recent heavy rains and unprecedented floods, Rajat Kumar said that they had two sources to predict the rainfall — IMD and Euro- satellite. “It was a sudden and very heavy rainfall.

Both IMD and Euro-satellite were unable to predict that heavy rainfall, after 100 years, would occur in just 24 hours. Something is there behind it,” he said.

He added that cloudburst was a generic word and not really scientific. He added that flash floods would occur due to the climate change.On the damages to Kadam and Kaleshwaram motors, he said that the loss very minimum.

“The period of liability is not over and the contracting agency will undertake the repairs on free of cost for Kaleshwaram motors. There is no need to change the design of Kadam.

Because of the establishment of O&M wing in the Irrigation department, the loss was very less. I am actually very happy that our staff handled the crisis very well,” Rajat Kumar said.