Expressing serious concern over the alleged illegal construction of projects by Maharashtra and Karnataka on Godavari and Krishna rivers, the main Opposition, Telugu Desam Party (Tdp)MLAs on Tuesday staged a dharna at Gun Park, demanding that the Congress government mount pressure on the Centre to save the interests of the state.The Tdp supremo, Mr N Chandrababu Naidu, demanded that Chief Minister Dr Y S Rajasekhara Reddy lead an all-party delegation to New Delhi to pile up pressure on the Centre.
The alleged illegal construction under Babli project on Godavari by Maharashtra and a number of small barrages by Karnataka would severely affect the flow of water into downstream Andhra Pradesh, the Tdp leader contended.Mr N Chandrababu Naidu sought Prime Minister's direction for Maharashtra and Karnataka governments over the issue of "illegal" construction of barrages across Godavari and Krishna rivers.The sensitive issue of illegal utilisation of both Godavari and Krishna waters by Maharashtra and Karnataka, with utter disregard to the awards passed by different Tribunals, was a glaring act of violation of law, he said demanding immediate intervention of Centre to avert deepening of inter-state water disputes.
The Babhali project being built by Maharashtra on river Godavari alone would deprive AP of 65 tmc ft of water and leave the Sriram Sagar project area in Telangana region totally parched, Chandrababu apprehended.In all, Maharashtra was building 13 projects illegally on Godavari and the Karnataka government was building 58 barrages, with each capable of impounding 2 tmc ft of water on Krishna river, he pointed out.
"While Maharashtra has erected gates on Babhali projects in total violation of the Supreme Court order, the projects undertaken by Karnataka are nearing completion. Being the lower riparian state, Andhra Pradesh is worst hit because of the illegal projects and has become a victim of the brazen interests of the two neighbouring states," Chandrababu noted.The left parties—CPI and CPM also extended their support to the cause.