Can KCR, Jagan resolve water disputes?

For the first time in the last three years, the chief ministers of Telugu states – Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy of Andhra Pradesh and K Chandrasekhar Rao of Telangana are going to meet “officially” on June 28 to resolve the river water disputes between the two states.

The last such meeting was held in September 2016 in New Delhi when KCR and then AP chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu had met in the presence of then Union water resources minister Uma Bharati on Krishna and Godavari river water related issues and various projects on them.

However, this time there is no involvement of the Centre at all, as KCR suggested to Jagan that the issues could be resolved without the involvement of the Centre.

What Jagan should be careful about the meeting is that the agenda for the meeting is being set by KCR himself. Apparently, KCR is planning to suggest projects that link Godavari to Krishna river.

Especially, the projects he is proposing are to divert Godavari water to Srisailam, revival of Dummugudem-Nagarjunasgar tail pond project and reverse pumping of Krishna water from Prakasam barrage to Nagarjunasagar are highly only cost-intensive.

One wonders why KCR is interested in Andhra projects. Especially, the tail pond project was sternly resisted by KCR in the past and he scrapped the Dummugudem project completely.

“Since KCR has realized that the projects on Krishna river like Srisailam and Nagarjunasagar besides schemes like Kalwakurthy and Nettempadu do not get enough water due to non-cooperation from Karnataka, he is coming out with a proposal to utilize Godavari waters. Since it is not possible without Jagan’s support, he is coming out with such proposals,” a source said.

So, it would help Telangana more than Andhra Pradesh. It will be better if Jagan takes a prudent decision by taking up such cost-intensive projects, instead of blindly following KCR’s suggestions.