Andhra Pradesh to appeal Odisha to utilise Balimela water share for Rabi in Godavari delta

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Andhra Pradesh is entitled to get 50% water from Balimela reservoir as per the water share pact; Godavari delta requires 90.22 TMC for Rabi season for irrigation and drinking purposes

The Andhra Pradesh State government will appeal to the Odisha State to utilize its share from Balimela Reservoir to meet the irrigation needs in the Godavari delta for the Rabi season.

The existing Andhra-Odisha water-sharing pact on the Balimela reservoir entitles Andhra Pradesh to draw 50 percent water share. Located in Odisha’s Malkangiri district in the Sileru river system, the total reservoir capacity is 96 TMC.

“The present availability of water is 47 TMCs in the Balimela reservoir. We can draw up to 22 TMC of water for irrigation the purpose in the Godavari delta in the Rabi 2021-22”, said Irrigation Circle (Dowleswaram) Superintendent Engineer B. Rambabu.

On November 29, the Irrigation Advisory Board (IAB-East Godavari) will finalize the proposal to make a request to the Odisha government for the Balimela reservoir water share.

The IAB will also appeal to the APGENCO to release 4,000 cusecs per day from the Sileru project for irrigation needs without impacting its hydropower production. The APGENCO will be urged to supply the water for 90 days beginning from January.

Godavari delta: In Godavari’s Eastern, Central, and Western Delta, the total requirement of water for the irrigation (Rabi season) and drinking is 90.22 TMCs.

The total acreage is 8.96 lakh acres in the Rabi season in the Godavari delta (4.36 lakh acres in East Godavari and 4.60 lakh acres in West Godavari). Above 74% of the area is likely to be irrigated in the Rabi season, according to the Irrigation officials.

East Godavari Zilla Parishad Chairman Vipparthi Venu Gopala Rao told The Hindu; “Every possibility is being explored to meet the irrigation needs in the Godavari delta for the Rabi season 2021-22. The water will be drawn from all the sources including Polavaram project, Sileru project, and Yeleswaram reservoir”.

The quantity of water to be released from the Polavaram project site for the Rabi season will be finalized during the IAB meeting.

“We are coordinating with the officials of West Godavari district for the Rabi season and sharing of irrigation water for the Rabi season. An action plan will be finalized during the IAB meeting”, added Mr. Venu Gopala Rao, an authority on the Godavari delta system.

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