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Telangana moves Supreme Court on Polavaram backwaters issue

Hyderabad: Vexed with Central Government’s negligence to Telangana’s repeated pleas on comprehensive reassessment of flood analysis and submergence of Bhadrachalam due to Polavaram backwaters, State Government filed a case in Supreme Court, said Finance Minister Harish Rao.

Members from both TRS and Congress parties in the Assembly raised their voice over the threat of Bhadrachalam, including the Lord Sri Rama temple and surrounding areas getting submerged due to backwaters of Polavaram project.

Congress MLA P Veeraiah, TRS MLA Sandra Venkata Veeraiah said the Central Government had not assessed the flood analysis and submergence impact properly due to construction of Polavaram project.

They wanted the five gram panchayats that were merged with Andhra Pradesh back with Telangana. Even to construct the retaining wall around Bhadrachalam to avoid flooding, land was required and it was essential to merge the five villages back with Telangana, said Venkata Veeraiah.

During a short discussion on Central Government failures in implementing the assurances made under AP Reorganisation Act in the House, the Finance Minister said Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao had personally taken up the submergence and increasing the project height issue with Central Government.

During his stint as Irrigation Minister, he had explained about the adverse impacts of Polavaram to the then union Minister of Water Resources Nitin Gadkari.

Telangana Government had hired the best lawyers for arguing the case and was constantly pursuing it, he said. “There was no option left but to file a case in the Supreme Court to save the temple and Bhadrachalam from getting submerged in the backwaters” Harish Rao said.

Transport Minister P Ajay Kumar said generally flood water recedes immediately in Bhadrachalam but due to Polavaram, there was obstruction.

On humanitarian grounds, the Andhra Pradesh Government should stick to the earlier plan of 36 lakh cusecs capacity and not increase the project height to store 56 lakh cusecs, he appealed.