Jagan, Vijay Sai, and KVP are trying to stall the project, says Minister
Minister for Water Resources Devineni Umamaheswara Rao has alleged that YSR Congress president Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, his “trusted lieutenant” and Rajya Sabha member V. Vijay Sai Reddy, and Rajya Sabha member K.V.P. Ramachandra Rao are trying to stall the Polavaram project.
“The three leaders have gone to the extent of passing on information obtained in the Parliament, the A.P. Legislative Assembly, and courts to the Odisha government and other stakeholders to bring the project to a halt.”
“In spite of the malicious propaganda, the government is determined to complete the project as per schedule under the supervision of the Central Water Commission, the Polavaram Project Authority, and the designs committee, whose officials and engineers are visiting the site regularly,” the Minister has asserted.
Addressing the media here on Sunday, Mr. Umamaheswara Rao said that the Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy-led Congress government could mobilise a meagre ?540 crore from the Central government. To the contrary, the TDP government could mobilise ?3,400 crore, he said.
The Minister stated that the project estimate (?16,000 crore) was computed at the prices prevailing in 2014 as per the instructions of the Central government and that the Collectors of West and East Godavari districts were working out the cost of land acquisition.
The Minister alleged that Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy’s bid to bag the Polavaram powerhouse contract had resulted in the project coming to a grinding halt in 2009. His subsequent bargaining with the Central government too had failed, and thereafter the YSRC came into existence, the Minister said.
Mr. Rao wondered what made the YSR government pre-close the Polavaram spill-way and rock-dam works and later invite fresh tenders by including the powerhouse component without the Cabinet’s nod.
CM for Polavaram today
Referring to the progress of the project works, the Minister said that they were going on at a brisk pace with the deployment of a 146-metre-long telescopic belt conveyor of concrete, which was one of the three such equipment (4000 cubic feet-a-day capacity each) being used in the world (the other two are used in Australia and Canada), and three additional heavy-duty hydraulic excavators.
The Minister said that fabrication of four out of 48 crest gates had been completed and the diaphragm wall construction gathered momentum.
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu is visiting Polavaram on Monday to take stock of the works at the Polavaram dam site.