2 States, 2 River Boards

4 gates of Nagarjuna Sagar project lifted

Telangana: 4 gates of Nagarjuna Sagar project lifted (File Photo)


Centre creates separate management boards for Krishna and Godavari in AP and Telangana

New Delhi: Union Ministry of Jal Shakti on Friday held that the gazette notification issued about the Krishna and Godavari Water Boards' purview on Thursday night was in keeping with the exercise undertaken by the Centre to resolve the on-going disputes between the two Telugu States.

Speaking to the media on Friday, joint secretary of the Ministry, Sanjay Avasthi, said the AP State Re-Organisation Act 2014 had categorically mentioned the share of waters between AP and Telangana and accordingly an Apex Council was formed under Section 84 of the Act. The first meeting of the Apex Council was held in September 2016, but no conclusive outcome was possible.

Again, the Council met on October 6 of 2020. The Centre, which was keen to resolve the disputes amicably and render justice to both the States, had fixed the purview of the two Boards after considering all aspects, he said. Even before issuing the new Gazette Notification, considerable exercise had gone into the issue and long discussions had been held with the Central Water Commission (CWS).

"Every word incorporated in it was in tune with the Bifurcation Act and must have gone into the drafting. Both the State Governments must equally bear the cost of maintenance of the Boards now. They need to deposit Rs 200 crore each in 60 days for the same," he added.

Accordingly, the Centre has issued two notifications --- one for the Godavari River Management Board (GRMB) and another for the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) --- for administration, regulation, maintenance and operation of projects in the Godavari and the Krishna river basins in these two States. The notification mentions that the boards "shall ordinarily exercise" jurisdiction on the Godavari and the Krishna rivers with regards to projects like barrages, dams, reservoirs, regulating structures, part of canal network and transmission.

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