West Godavari (Andhra Pradesh) [India], June 2 (ANI): Andhra Pradesh irrigation minister Anil Kumar on Wednesday said that water will be released from the Polavaram project by the Kharif season of 2022.
The minister reviewed the Polavaram project works at the site this morning. He was accompanied by local leaders and departmental officials.
Later, while speaking to the reporters, the minister said that despite all odds due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state government is working hard to provide safe drinking water.
"By 2022's Kharif season, we will give water by June 2022. We are making plans accordingly", he said.
Upon being questioned upon TDP leaders criticism on social media about the completion of the project, the minister said, "In fact, TDP had come to power in 2014, but did nothing for Polavaram project. In the last two years, they had acted of doing some work. Such people are now making cheap criticism of our government."
"We have been working on the Polavaram project. Even in these tough times of the coronavirus pandemic, 80 persons in our irrigation department, including 5 engineers working in the Polavaram project, have died of coronavirus. Yet, we did not stop the project works. Despite a lockdown last year, thousands of workers are working bravely. But TDP leaders are making false propaganda demoralizing the confidence of employees and workers at Polavaram project," he said.
Acknowledging the labourers' problems in the state, the minister said, "Thousands of labourers have migrated to their native places during last season. Nowadays not even labourers are available. Not only in Andhra Pradesh or India but all over the world, all works are stopped. At such time, one has to appreciate the workers and labourers who are working at the project, leaving their families at home. We salute and thank all of them."
"We will provide rehabilitation to those who lost their lives in the project works", he added.
On December 16, 2020, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy met Union Home Minister Amit Shah at his residence and discussed various issues of state interest, including details of the Polavaram Project.
According to a statement from the Chief Minister's Office (CMO), "The Chief Minister submitted a memorandum on Polavaram and urged him to consider the second revised cost estimate as per the 2017-18 index and pass the Rs 55,656 crore expenditure and give necessary instructions to the Finance and Jal Shakti Departments accordingly."(ANI)