HYDERABAD: With no concrete decision on water sharing from Srisailam and Nagarjunasagar dams at Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) meeting, Andhra Pradesh is fearing the worst water crisis in the ensuing summer. With only 30 TMC feet water available at Srisailam which has to be shared with Telangana, many AP towns and cities are glaring at severe water shortage. While the demand for drinking water alone is over 100 TMC feet for next six months, near empty dams in the two states are sending shock waves in the two governments.
"The KRMB which met on Wednesday did not take any decision on water sharing between two states as statistics presented by two states differ. We are submitting our water consumption details again to set the record straight," said Adithyanath Das, principal se cretary , AP irrigation department.
Water level at Srisailam plummeted to a new low at 835 feet against 857 feet last year. The reservoir now has only 55 TMC out of which only 30 TMC feet can be utilized for the next six months. Similarly , Nagarjunasagar which had 226 TMC feet water last year is now looking almost empty . At 508.5 feet which is below minimum draw down level (MDDL), the dam has only 129.14 TMC feet water of which only 9 TMC feet can be released through pumping.
"Never in the recent past both reservoirs touched MDDL in the month of December. River Krishna used to get fresh inflows in Sep tember, October and November to fill two major dams.This year, both dams failed to cross MDDL even during monsoon period. This is clear indication that a severe drinking water crisis is certain," said a senior engineer in Telangana irrigation department.
Major towns and cities in Krishna, West Godavari, Guntur and Prakasam districts depend on Krishna water for their drinking water needs. Already most of the towns reported water shortage and cut down supplies.Machilipatnam, Eluru, Nuzivid, Tenali and Ongole already imposed restrictions on the water supplies. Chirala, Parchur, Narasaraopet, Tiruvuru, Bapatla, Sattenapalli and Markapur reported severe shortage. Rural water supply department has deployed additional water tankers in three districts.
To overcome the drinking water crisis, the AP government is planning to request the KRMB not to tamper the water sharing met hod decided by the Brijesh Kumar Tribunal that allot ed 512 TMC to AP and 299 TMC for Telangana. AP is planning to request release of 30 TMC feet to meet drin king water needs in three phases January , March and May . Reserves at Pulichin hala also dried up as avai able water was released to save the standing crop in Krishna delta.
The Pulichinthala pro ect hardly has any water in he reservoir even as drin king water requirement in Krishna district set to doub e with the construction of capital city near Amaravati State government is expec ing a higher demand for drinking water as more and more people are relocating to Amaravati region.
"Sharing of available 30 TMC feet water should be do ne in the ratio decided by the water tribunal and at the same time, severe water shortage in Krishna delta must be given consideration by KRMB," pointed AP irri gation officials.