Telangana suffered more damage in the utilisation of Krishna river water during the BRS regime than it did during undivided Andhra Pradesh, as the previous government failed to safeguard the state’s interests, Chief Minister A Revanth Reddy alleged on Sunday.
Addressing a press conference, he said the BRS is trying to attack the Congress government by “covering up its own sins” on the issue of handing over projects on Krishna and Godavari rivers to Centre (river management boards).
He countered the criticism of BRS leaders that handing over the projects to KRMB (Krishna River Management Board) would hurt the state’s interests.
This comes against the backdrop of Telangana and neighbouring Andhra Pradesh recently agreeing to hand over the management (regulation) of water release from the Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar projects, from 15 outlets based on them and spillways of the two joint storage facilities for the two states, to the KRMB.
The KRMB was constituted by the Centre as per the Andhra Pradesh Re-Organisation Act, 2014 for the administration, regulation, maintenance and operation of such projects, as may be notified by the Central Government from time to time.
The Act talks about handing over the projects to the river management boards and BRS president and former Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao was MP when the Act was passed, the Chief Minister said.
Mr Rao, also known as KCR, had earlier said he was consulted when the Act was drafted, he said.
It was the BRS government which agreed in 2015 for Telangana’s share to be 299 TMC out of the undivided Andhra Pradesh share of 811 TMC in Krishna river, though 68 per cent of catchment area of Krishna river is in Telangana, he said.
The BRS government had also agreed in 2019 to renew the same share every year, he said.
In 2022, the BRS government, in a meeting of KRMB, agreed to hand over the Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar projects, Revanth Reddy said.
“Telangana suffered more damage during Chandrasekhar Rao’s tenure as Chief Minister for 10 years in Krishna river water more than the damage it suffered during the 60 years of undivided Andhra Pradesh,” he said.
Meanwhile, state Irrigation Minister N Uttam Kumar Reddy said the government would not hand over the projects to KRMB.
Responding to Revanth Reddy’s allegations against the BRS, party MLA and former minister T Harish Rao claimed the BRS government did not hand over the projects to KRMB despite pressure from the Centre.
The BRS quoted Harish Rao as saying at a meeting that the Congress government handed over the projects within two months after coming to power.
Harish Rao also stated his party is ready for a debate on irrigation issues in the Assembly, the BRS said on X (formerly Twitter).