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Fund crunch hits ‘lifeline’ projects

Fund crunch hits ‘lifeline’ projects
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Fund crunch hits ‘lifeline’ projects.Be it in the united Andhra Pradesh or in the separate Telangana State, there is no change in the fate of several ongoing irrigation projects in Khammam district.

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Poor allocation to major projects disappoints Khammam farmers

Khammam: Be it in the united Andhra Pradesh or in the separate Telangana State, there is no change in the fate of several ongoing irrigation projects in Khammam district.The State government allocated Rs 36 crore for Khammam’s most-sought-after projects – Indira Sagar and Rajiv Sagar (Dummugudem) Lift Irrigation schemes – in the 2015-16 Budget, disappointing the people, especially farmers, as they were eagerly waiting for a fair deal after years of negligence by successive governments. People said the allocations for these projects were a ‘repeat’ of earlier years.Works on the Indira Sagar (Rudramkota) and Rajiv Sagar (Dummugudem) projects were initiated a decade ago.

While the estimated cost of Rajiv Sagar project was Rs 1,681 crore, the government had spent nearly Rs 900 crore before this fiscal’s allotment of Rs 25 crore. Apart from paucity of funds, land acquisition was another major hurdle. While the requirement was around 6,258 acres for the lift irrigation scheme, the authorities were able to acquire only about 950 acres. The project, which was designed to lift 16.5 tmc ft water from the Godavari river near Dummugudem, needs laying of 74.34 km pipeline and gravity canals of 74 km length.Aimed at irrigating two lakh acres in Khammam, Krishna and West Godavari districts, the Indira Sagar Lift Irrigation scheme now appears to be in a state of uncertainty as the ayacut area falls in both Telangana State and Andhra Pradesh.

So far, the government had spent around Rs 870 crore against its estimated cost of Rs 1,227 crore. In the latest Budget, the Telangana government allotted a paltry Rs 10 crore.The other major project, Dummugudem-Nagarjunasagar Tail Pond project, started in 2007, was also hit by fund crunch. While the revised cost of the project was Rs 19,521 crore, the governments had so far sanctioned Rs 547 crore. With just Rs 1 crore allocated in this fiscal, the future of the project hangs in balance.Besides, funds earmarked for the minor and medium irrigation projects in the region were also inadequate.Palem project was allocated Rs 5 crore, Peddavagu Rs 50 crore and modernisation of NSP Canal in Khammam and Nalgonda districts Rs 196 crore.

By Adepu Mahender

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