Water Dispute Escalates: Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Clash Over Nagarjuna Sagar Dam Control, Centre Intervenes

By manish198832 Dec 2, 2023

Water Dispute Escalates: Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Clash

Water Dispute Escalates-Introduction:

Water Dispute Escalates-In a dramatic turn of events, just hours before the Telangana state elections, Andhra Pradesh assumed control of the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam, triggering tensions between the two neighboring states. The move, involving the release of water, unfolded at 2 am on Thursday, catching Telangana officials off guard as they were engrossed in election activities. Nearly 700 Andhra Pradesh police officers stormed the dam, opening the right canal to release 500 cusecs of Krishna water per hour.

Water Dispute Escalates-Andhra Pradesh’s Stance:

Water Dispute Escalates

Amid the rising tensions, Andhra Pradesh’s state irrigation minister, Ambati Rambabu, asserted that the water release was solely for drinking water purposes. In a cryptic message on X, he announced the initiation of water release. Later, he clarified that Andhra Pradesh had not violated any treaty and was well within its rights as per the agreement between the two states. According to Rambabu, 66% of Krishna water belongs to Andhra Pradesh, while Telangana is entitled to 34%. He emphasized that Andhra Pradesh had only utilized its allocated share of water and had not taken a single drop beyond its entitlement.

Centre’s Intervention:

As tensions escalated, the central government intervened, urging both states to revert to the water release status as of November 28. Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla proposed this solution during a video conference with officials from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, and both states agreed to the plan. In an effort to prevent further conflict, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) will now supervise the dam and ensure that both states receive water in accordance with the established agreement.

Water Dispute Escalates-Telangana’s Allegations:

The incident came to light when Telangana Chief Secretary Santhi Kumari accused Andhra Pradesh of deploying around 500 armed policemen to the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam. According to Kumari, the Andhra Pradesh officers damaged CCTV cameras and released approximately 5,000 cusecs of water by opening the head regulators at gate numbers 5 and 7. She raised concerns about the potential disruption to the drinking water supply for around two crore people in Hyderabad and its surrounding areas, creating a significant law and order issue.

Legal Ramifications:

In response to Andhra Pradesh’s actions, two cases were registered against the Andhra Police in Nalgonda district of Telangana. This is not the first time such a dispute has arisen; in 2015, Andhra Police attempted a similar incursion into the dam, but Telangana security forces successfully thwarted the effort.

Conclusion:

The clash over control of the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam highlights the longstanding water disputes between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. While Andhra Pradesh maintains that it acted within the bounds of the agreement, Telangana has raised serious concerns about the potential ramifications for its residents. With the central government’s intervention, both states have agreed to revert to the previous water release arrangement, monitored by the CRPF to ensure compliance. The incident underscores the need for a comprehensive and amicable resolution to prevent future conflicts over shared water resources.

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