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Delta farmers a worried lot

Highlights

Farmers want govt to speed up delta modernisation works like Pattiseema project. Though the project was launched 7 years ago, not more than 50per cent works have been completed so far

*Farmers want govt to speed up delta modernisation works like Pattiseema project
*Though the project was launched 7 years ago, not more than 50
per cent works have been completed so far

Vijayawada: The delay in modernisation of Krishna delta is likely to affect the agricultural production. Farm experts are expressing concern over neglect of Krishna delta by the State government. They appealed to the government to take initiative to complete the delta modernisation works on priority like that of Pattiseema project and save the delta having an ayacut of 13.08 lakh acres.

Even after launching the project seven years ago, not more than 50 per cent of works have been completed so far. But the officials have been claiming that 55 per cent of works have been completed. The farmers of tail-end areas are expressing ire over neglect of modernisation scheme.

A farmer V Ramachandra Rao of Koduru village said that they are not getting water and the water supply hardly reaches Mopidevi mandal in Krishna district. He said that the tail-end farmers are suffering losses with scarcity of water. He said as there was no water supply to ayacut due to scarcity of water in Krishna river this year, the government should have taken up modernisation works to increase the carrying capacity of canals.

Another farmer Satish Kumar of Nandivada mandal alleged irregularities in modernisation works in Nandivada mandal. He said the canal bunds are weak and are likely to be breached in rainy season. He said the government should have strengthened the canal bunds and clear the silt for free flow of water to the tail-end areas.

Former Agriculture Minister Vadde Sobhanadreeswara Rao observed that the government should have taken up the modernisation works this year as water was not released to the canals due to scarcity of water in Krishna river. He said that the government should give priority for completion of Krishna delta modernisation works to save the delta and to increase agricultural production.

AP Rythanga Samakhya president Yerneni Nagendranath said that the government has failed to strengthen the canals by completing lining works and giving priority for construction of structures including buildings of irrigation department. He said the officials completed lining works to Ryves canal at a stretch of 16 km on right side of the canal from Kunderu to Yegnapadu village but failed to take up lining of left side of the canal. He questioned what is the benefit of one side lining of the canal.

He said as per the proposals, the officials have to complete the lining of Ryves canal at a stretch of 36 km right from Vijayawada city to increase the carrying capacity as the canal irrigates 3.36 lakh acres. He said the condition of canals in tail-end areas is horrible and farmers are expressing concern over lack of water supply. He said that the government which repeatedly appeals farmers for water conservation should increase the carrying capacity of canals.

AP Congress Committee member and Jala Yagna samithi convener Kolanukonda Shivaji said that the TDP government has totally neglected Krishna delta modernisation. He said 45 per cent of modernisation works were completed during Congress regime. The government has been delaying the modernisation works by appointing a committee. It may be noted here that the State government appointed a three-member expert committee in 2014 to study the modernisation works.

The YSR Congress Farmers Cell State president MVS Nagi Reddy said that the TDP government failed to complete Krishna delta modernisation works. He said the delta modernisation is not seen in government priority list. He said that the government has failed to allot necessary budget for the modernisation works.

Krishna delta modernisation wing deputy chief engineer Trinatha Rao said that 55 per cent of delta modernisation works were completed and they are planning to take up another 30 per cent of works this year as per the allotment of budget.

By P V Krishna Rao

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