Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Prof.T.Shivaji Rao,
Director, Center for Environmental Studies, Gitam University, Visakhapatnam

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72_evCt8rpU&feature=related  (Real live pictue of  collapse of Polavaram dam  that kills lakhs of people of Rajahmundry and Konaseema)
 http://www.downtoearth.org.in/content/why-polavaram-pointless-project    (DOWN TO EARTH)
For Detailed reasons as to Why Dr.K.L.Rao and Dr.K.Sriramakrishnayya,very Eminent Andhra Irrigation Experts &consultants to A.P.state Government opposed Polavaram Dam can be seen from t Web sites
Change in Scope of the project,as defined by the Asian Development Bank as seen under item No;7
http://www.adb.org/Documents/Manuals/PAI/PAI-504.pdf  [ 15 percentchange in cost is  considered as change in the  scope of project which needs fresh Environmental appraisal by Union Ministry of Environment]
For some more details see the following websites

Mrs. Indira Gandhi, the former Prime Minister after delivering the valedictory address at the first International Conference on Human Environment held in 1972 at Stockholm had wholeheartedly realized that most of the Development projects all over the world are accompanied by certain undesirable consequences that require immediate mitigative measures to protect public health and natural resources . Accordingly she ordered that major Development projects in India also should be subjected to environmental scrutiny . Consequently all the irrigation and power projects wwere ordered to be referred to the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, for sanctioning the clearances for the projects from the Environmental angle since 1978 

 Mrs.Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister made the following observations regarding Big irrigation and power projects and communicated them to the Secretary, Department of Science and Technology in March 1980 for taking necessary timely action from the Environmental perspective:

“There are several proposals which were agreed to earlier but would need to be looked into again. Amongst them are the Silent Valley project, the Dam in Tehri Garhwal and the Dam in Lalpur, Gujarat. It seems that larger areas of very fertile lands are being submerged without any commensurate gains. There may be other such cases also. It is true that these decisions have been taken over a period, there is great local distress and a feeling that contractors and other such groups will be the main gainers. Hence it is necessary to have another look in depth”.

Special working groups were constituted to reexamine the projects like Silent Valley Hydro Electric Project in Kerala, Tehri dam across River Ganges{Bhagirath] in U.P., and Lalpur dam across the Heran river in Gujarat to study in depth about their Environmental impacts and the remedial measures required to be taken along with an assessment of their costs-benefit aspects.

Note: 1.   The details of the case study of Lalpur Dam  iniated by Mrs.Gandhi are presented in the Annexure.
          2.  How the Polavaram project design was hastely done in an unscientific manner is presented in the   Annexure

During 1980’s Mrs.Indira Gandhi initiated a public  policy based on traditional Indian dharma that all Developmental activities intended to promote national prosperity and improve the quality of life of  human beings, animal and plant populations and other forms of life in nature must ensure sustainable development. She has thoroughly studied the relationships between the human activities promoted for the progress of human civilization over centuries and their consequential impacts both positive and negative on natural life systems. Over a period of time she recognized that the adverse effects of developmental activities could be caused due tounknown reasons as well as due to indifferent attitudes of the developers to the quality of life of mankind and their natural life systems and  that most of such damaging impacts could be corrected by taking preventive  as well as curative measures in time. As an outcome of this approach Mrs.Indira Gandhi before attending the Indian Science Congress Meeting in the first week of January 1976 at Andhra University, Waltair,  made a personal request to the Vice Chancellor to arrange for a unique,  “Exhibition on Progress without Pollution”. The then Vice-Chancellor, Sri.M.R.Appa Rao an enlightened humanist and a nature lover after consultations with the academicians asked me to make necessary arrangements for the purpose. As the Acting Principal of the Engineering College, I have organized during the Indian Science Congress Session,an exhibition  with working models on air pollution control and water pollution control from different industries and municipalities, different methods of mosquito control including biological controls with a special display on how wrong siting of the 6 million tonne Mathura refinery upwind of Agra on the Yamuna River banks will corrode the Taj and ruin its marvellous beauty and cause ecological disruptions of the Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuary,the water quality of Yamuna river and corrosion of the unique historical Monuments of Mathura, Agra and Fatehpur Sikri and the Environment of Braj Mandal.
 After listening to my detailed explanation on how environmental pollution problems, droughts and floods are mostly due to man-made causes she questioned why preventive and curative measures cannot be implemented in time by making proper environmental impact assessments of all major developmental projects with a view to take timely remedial actions to minimize the impact of industrial pollution.        In the light of the public agitations against River valley projects like Tehri,she asked what can be done to mitigate the misery caused to the public due to the large scale displacement of people by  Big dams byconsidering alternative schemes to the proposed projects by taking the public into confident for whose benefit the projects are contemplated.    Although I had asked the proponents of the Tehri dam as a member of the expert committee of the Union Ministry of Environment in Februry 1990 what alternatives can be proposed by the proponents incase Tehri dam is not recommended by our expert committee the Tehri Hydro Development Corporation Engineers presented alternate project cosntaining about 5 run-of-the-river schemes for generating adeequate hydro-power  on the basis of an existing run-of-the-river scheme for the purpose located at Uttarakashi on this river upstreamof Tehri. But the Secretaries to the Union Governsment in the PMO Office managed to  ignore our expert committee recommendations for cancellation of the Tehri dam due to many risks presented by the project.  Thus even the views of the experts are ignored by the Governemnt officials and the concerne d ministers to permissions to the hazardous projects merely to satisfy the interests of the Contractors, Engineers and the politicians.  In this connection the meaning of a run-of-the-river dam is presented here.
("Run-of-the-River dam" is a manmade structure which:
is regulated or permitted by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) pursuant to the act of November 26,1978 (P.L.1375, No.325), known as the Dam Safety and Encroachments Act;
is built across a river or stream for the purposes of impounding water where the impoundment at normal flow levels is completely within the banks and all flow passes directly over the entire dam structure within the banks, excluding abutments, to a natural channel downstream; and
DEP determines to have hydraulic characteristics such that at certain flows persons entering the area immediately below the dam may be caught in the backwash.   http://www.fish.state.pa.us/rrdam.htm   
Defining the problem    http://www.ricka-flatwater.org/dams.htm
Many low-head dams are classified as run-of-the-river dams with a hydraulic height (change in elevation from head water to tail water) of less than 10 feet. The Pennsylvania Run-of-the-River Dam Act defines a run-of-river dam as a structure "constructed across the width of a river or stream to impound water where at normal flow levels the storage is completely within the banks and all flow passes directly over the entire dam structure within the banks, excluding abutments, to a natural channel downstream."
Although the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) defines a low-head dam as having a hydraulic height of less than 25 feet, the structures discussed in this article are significantly smaller and would be classified by AASHTO as run-of-river dams. It is their low hydraulic height that misleads many to dismiss the dangers associated with the seemingly placid structures.)

Mrs.Indira Gandhi  promised to take action to relocate at least some components of the proposed refinery at a suitable place downwind of Agra to protect the magnificient beauty of the Taj Mahal. 
 But she was unduly influenced by the politicians like HN Bahuguna, the then Chief Minister of UP who insisted that in order to defeat the local popular non-congress leader ,the Rajah of Bharatpur in the elections. the foundation stone for the refinery must be located at Mathura only to convince the people that it will provide jobs and business for them and consequently the congress party  can encash their votes and came to power. Shockingly HN Bahuguna changed his loyalty from Congress party and joined in the Janata Dal party to the surprise of Mrs.Indiara Gandhi and to the ill fate of Taj Mahal,Bahuguna became the petroleum Minister and refused to accept even the recommendations of a Joint Committee of Parliament to relocate the Mathura rifinery downwind of Agra as suggested by me to the Parliamentary committee in March1979 itself. Thus politicians and officials in the Government most often play a crucial role for the benefit of the contractors, engineers and yheir relatives while being detrimental to the interests of the people and their natural resources.
 In the case of Polavaram dam project almost all the people including the so called experts are not at all interested in taking a  comprehensive view of the several  Socialogical,technical,economic,legal and environmental  including even tthe safety aspect of the project. Some of the crucial points are presented here in a chronological order to identify the different vested interests that influenced the course of events resulting in prolonged legal battles in different courts and public agitations that demanded  for better alternative Schemes taht are ,safe,technically feasible ,economically viable and socially acceptable
Old Generation of Government Experts proposed a Barrage or a Concrete Dam but not a risky Earth- Rockfill Dam at Polavaram  for Diverting Godavari Surplus waters into Krishna  river SEE
http://www.irrigation.ap.gov.in/volume1.pdf  [study  pages 66 to 70 of Chapter VII on Godavari Water Diversion  into krishna basin by a b arrage and  detailed and reasoned answer provided to ISSUE VI by Bachawat Tribunal during 1979-1980 as Maharashtra and Karnataka were agitating for more of krishna water  by diversion of Godavari flood waters into krishna river basin ]

During 1850’s Sir Arthor Cotton suggested for a barrage at Polavaram:   
Sir Arthor Cotton was  a great humanist and a friend of the farmers wanted maximum utilization of Godavari waters for augmenting agriculture and suggested that in order to irrigate the uplands of East and West Godavari districts. Another anicut must be constructed on the upstream side of Rajahmundry. Because he was a great Irrigation Engineer with humanistic outlook and great vision he knew that it will be a highly dangerous to propose a major water storage dam in the close proximity of growing townships like Rajahmundry which may be adversely affected due to collapse of such a major storage dam for one reason or the other. Hence Sir Arthor Cotton suggested for an anicut to irrigate more lands in the upland areas of Easternghats in East Godavari and West Godavari districts.

In 1945, Madras Government proposed a high concrete dam at Polavaram site :    Madras Presidency Government proposed a major reservoir project across Godavari before independence and it was known as Ramapada Sagar project with a height of 198ft. in the first phase to raised to 208ft. in the final phase with a storage capacity of 690 TMC. This was proposed as a concrete dam with a total height of 438ft. upto the foundations with sand bed extending for a depth of about 230ft. below the bed level. The spillway was provided for a length of 4200ft for a peak discharge of 21 lakh cusecs. Since concrete dam had to be taken upto the bedrock for its safety the cost of the project became too high and hence the high cost factor made the dam not all feasible and hence it was given up.

In 1953 Khosla Technical Committee sugested for a Barrage at Polavaram site: The Government of India appointed a high power technological committee under the chairmanship of Dr.A.N.Khosla, Chairman of the Central Water Commission (CWC) to study and submit report on the optimal utilization of water in Krishna-Godavari and Pennar rivers. This committee stated that there is a possibility of diverting Godavari water by constructing either a dam or a diversion barrage with a canal to transfer 142 TMC into Krishna river. The Committee further stated that if Ramapad Sagar dam is not built but a storage reservoir is constructed upstream on Godavari or its tributaries and only a diversion barrage is built at Ramapadsagar dam site the transfer of 142 TMC of water into Krishna river will remain unaffected.

In 1961 AP State Government Suggested for a Barrage at Polavaram site: In a technical report by the AP State Government prepared a 1961 on the optimum economic utilization of Krishna and Godavari waters the state Government recommended for construction of a barrage at Rampad Sagar site and a dam at Inchampalli to divert Godavari waters into Krishna rivers in Para 23 of the Report in the following words.

“The only practical scheme for diversion of Godavari waters to Krishna basin the lower reaches is by construction of Inchampalli dam and Rampad Sagar barrage. By this it will be possible to divert waters at less cost than the previous proposals (made by Maharashtra state Government) as the tunnels are eliminated and length of the canal reduced. But this itself is very costly as commented upon by the technical committee (Khosla committee) who stated that with a small quantity of water for diversion the economics of the proposal becomes problematic.

In 1962 the Technical Committee headed by Gulhati suggested for a barrage at Polavaram site: The Ministry of Irrigation and Power, Government of India appointed in a technical commission in May 1961 to study and submit a report on the utilization of Krishna and Godavari waters including the feasibility of diverting Godavari waters into Krishna river and the committee submitted its report in August 1962. This Commission was headed by an eminent engineer Mr.Gulhati along with other highly technically qualified experts as members. The Commission in its report stated that there will be ample surplus water in the upper part of the Godavari basin to meet the demands of thelocal projects and the surplus water from the lower part of the Godavari basin including the sub basins of Pranahita, Indravati and Sabari can be used for irrigation and hydro-power projects will be more than 10 MAF (435 TMC) and this surplus flow can be diverted into Krishna basin by the following 2 link canals.

1. A link canal from the Godavari from the anicut at Albaka (or Singareddi) to Pulichintala on the Krishna river, estimated at Rs.40 crores. This link canal can transfer about 95 TMC (2.2 MAF) to the Krishna.

2. A link canal from Godavari near Polavaram can transfer about 211 TMC (4.8 MAF) into Krishna river at Vijayawada estimated at Rs.40 crores about 30 TMC from Penganaga can be transferred through a link canal to make up the shortage of water in the Upper Godavari area.

In 1965 a technical Committee headed by Mr.A.C. Mitra suggested a barrage at Polavaram site: The Government of India appointed an expert committee in the wake of recurring floods in Godavari and Krishna rivers which were causing excessive flooding of the Kolleru lake to study the impacts of floods and suggest remedial measures. This technical committee headed by an eminent irrigation expert Mr.A.C.Mitra along with other irrigation experts recommended for the construction of a barrage at Polavaram for irrigating the upland areas on either side of the barrage.

Rampad Sagar  Reservoir is so named for the reason that the waters of the reservoir will lap the feet of Srirama at the Bhadrachalam temple, 74 miles above the proposed dam near Polavaram village.  This Concrete Dam was intended to irrigate 24 lakhs of acres with Paddy cultivation in addition to stabilizing irrigation in 21 lakh acres in Godavari and Krishna delta and will yield a million tonnes of rice that  will eliminate all the pre-war imports of rice from Burma and Travancore. Hydro-power of 75000KV and the projected was expected to be completed by the end of 1946.  Project cost was Rs.63 crores. The net return is 3.7% per annum on the net capital  outlay.Rock was below 200 ft. and it proved uneconomical and posed difficulties and was given up

In 1970 AP State Engineers proposed a big reservoir at Polavaram  but designated it as a barrage : AP State submitted Polavaram barrage scheme in June 1970 to the Bachawat Tribunal. This scheme consists of a barrage across Godavari at Polavaram with FRL at +145ft. and minimum pond level at +45ft with Left Bank Canal upto Vizag Port with Full Supply Level with (FSL) at +137ft and Right  Canal upto Krishna river with FSLat +138ft. Safe Concrete Dam was replaced  by a risky Eart-cum-rock fill dam

In 1978 AP State Engineers proposed a hazardous  earth-cum-rockfill dam at Polavaram site:      AP state changed the Polavaram barrage scheme into an earth-cum-rockfill dam with a maximum height of 48.77m (160ft) with a crest length of 1555m (5100ft) . It had 2 spillways on the right flank sadal with 50 radial gates (50ft. x 42ft) with a flood lift of a 14ft. for peak design flood of 36 lakh cusecs. It had a concrete gravity dam on the left flank with Power house and river sluices. The earth dam is 35.05m (115ft) above the average river bed and 48.77m (160ft) above the deepest bed level of the river. This height for the dam is stated to be necessary for diverting the required quantity of water into the canals which proposed to irrigate vast areas on both the flanks. The MDDL and FRL stated to be required are +44.2m (145ft.) and RL +47.72m (+150ft) respectively with gross storage capacity of 5665 Mm3 (192 TMC) The storage available between the minimum draw down level and FRL (44.20m to 45.72) is only 800 Mm3 (28.31 TMC). The project serves 4.82 lakh ha. (11.90 lakh acres) of Ayacut during Kharif (June to October) and 2.27 lakh ha (5.6 lakh acres) under second crop (Jan to April) in the ultimate stage. The left canal, 208kmlong upto Visakhapatnam and it serves industrial needs and irrigates 1.89 lakh ha under first crop and 1.25 lakh ha. under second crop in East Godavari and Visakhapatnam. A lift irrigation canal starts at Km 177 near Anakapalli, 130km long irrigates 1.15lakh ha in Visakhapatnam and Srikakulam. Another lift canal, 177km long starts at Polavaram to serve upland areas of 0.57 lakh ha under first crop and 0.2 lakh ha under second crop in East Godavari and Visakhapatnam districts. The right main gravity canal 176km long upto Budameru river irrigates 1.21 lakh ha. under first crop and 0.80 lakh ha. under second crop in West Godavari and Krishna distrits.

In August, 1978 AP State made a conditional Agreement with Karnataka on Polavaram dam: On 4-8-1978 an agreement was signed between Karnataka and AP State under which clause-VII states that under the condition that clearance to Polavaram project is given by CWC for FRL/MWL of +150ft. MSL. AP State agrees to divert 80 TMC into Krishna for utilization by projects upstream of Nagarjuna Sagar by allotting share of 45 TMC to AP State and 35 TMC to both Karnataka and Maharashtra. Another condition is that AP Sate submits Polavaram project to CWC within 3 months of striking an agreement with all the 5 river basin states and that AP state will bear the full cost of this water diversion and if this quantity diverted is exceeded the water will be shared in the above stated proportion. Surprisingly while the Karnataka state Government which has no adverse impacts due to Polavaram project has taken the initiative to fix the height of the Polavaram dam the most effected states of Madhya Pradesh and Orissa were left with the option of deciding to agre on the crucial matter on submersion of lands in their states. Andhra Pradesh made agreements with Madhya Pradesh on 7-8-1978 and Orissa on 15-12-1978 on the issue of submersion of lands due to Polavaram project with the condition that including backwater effect. The design of the Polavaram project should be such that the submersion should not exceed +150ft MSL at Konta in Madhya Pradesh and Motu in Orissa due to maximum Probable Flood and backwater effects determination in consultation with Central Water Commission.

July, 1979: CWC finds fault with AP State for a faulty agreement on Polavaram: The CWC sent letter No.6/125/78-T.E/25 12-2514, dated the 3rd July, 1979 to Andhra Pradesh Government, the material portion of which is as follows:-

“It is seen from the project report that the State Government of Andhra Pradesh have proposed the Polavaram project for an FRL/MWL of +150ft. Therefore, prima facie, with MWL at Polavaram at RL +150ft. submergence due to all effects including that of backwater effect will always be more than RL+150ft upstream and also at Konta. The Stte Government will no doubt be working out the backwater effects at Konta/Motu considering advance releases from polavaram dam. It is however seen that during the year 1966 CWC had observed that a flood level at Konta had reached an RL 46.595m (RL 152.88ft) which is 0.875m higher than RL 45.72m (RL+150ft) This is an observed flood whose frequency is expected to be high. For a flood at Konta corresponding to frequency the flood adopted for the Polavaram dam (which will be between 1 in 500 years to 1 in 1000 years), the natural flood level at Konta should be expected to be substantially higher than RL +45.72m (RL +150ft) It would thus be een that the stipulation that a flood level at Konta/Motu should not rise above RL +150ft will not be practicable and that the agreements entered into by the states may have to be suitably modified. Perhaps this situation about observed flood level at Konta might not have been known to you and other states when this agreement was concluded.

In October 1979 Maharashtra supports the conditional agreement on Polavaram dam:                   On 15-10-79 the Maharashtra state Government took a very cantankerous cold blooded and brutal stand on the Polavaram dam project by demanding the Bachawat Tribunal to consider the agreement of 4th August 1978 between AP state and Karnataka as a practicable one and to consider the temporary submergence in Orissa and Madhya Pradesh preventable by constructing and maintaining protective embankment in the interests of Justice and for securing most equitable allocation of waters in the Godavari river.
Consequently Maharashtra wanted the tribunal to incorporate and give effect to clause VII in Karnataka Government in its report under Sec 5(2) and pass the required order and thereby implying that the tribunal must permit for the construction of Polavaram dam with FRL at +150ft irrespective of any disastrous consequences and at any cost.
 Madhya Pradesh disagrees with the contention of Maharashtra:
This Maharashtra petition was circulated to other basin states for replies. Karnataka did not file any reply. Andhra Pradesh submitted the tabulated statement of backwater level for the pre and post project conditions for 30 lakhs and 36 lakhs cusecs flood. AP wanted FRL 150subject to the safeguards regarding flood protection works. Madhya Pradesh disagreed with views of Maharashtra.
Orissa insists on integrated water resources planning for projects at Inchampalli and Polavaram:
Orissa stated that Polavaram and Inchampalli projects are closely interlinked because Polavaram project is dependent on the releases from Inchampalli Hydro-Power plant and the FRL and MWL of Polavaram depend upon the FRL and MWL of Inchampalli project and its spillway discharge capacity and the pattern of releases from Inchampalli and both these projects would be so palnned that the submergence in Madhya Pradesh and Orissa would not exceed +150ft due to all causes. Orissa rejected the arguments of Maharashtra on Polavaram project while Karanakata though did not file a reply yet it tried to support the arguments of Maharashtra.

The raise in elevation of the surface profile of a river when the flow is retarder above a dam is referred to as the backwater effect of the dam. It is the excess submergence over and above that by natural floods as caused by the backwater effects due tos the Polavaram dam that is to be avoided or minimized as far as possible. But the correct backwater effect or backwater level due to Polavaram dam must be determined by the CWC as per para 110 of the Bachawat Tribunal report.

The tribunal under chapter-2 of the final report dt.7-7-1980 under sec 5 (3) and Paragraph 12 the tribunal left the matter for the clearance of the Polavaram project to the CWC after making the following observations

“The CWC will naturally keep all these points in view while clearing the Polavaram project in consultation with the concerned parties, after giving due consideration to achieve the objectives mentioned in the project reports of Andhra Pradesh. The tribunal however, on its part does not find any difficulty for clearing the Polavaram project at FRL/MWL +150ft.

AP State Proposes Embankments to Prevent submersion in Upper States and insists on conditions:
On 26-10-1979 AP state agreed to prevent temporary submersion due to the dam by constructing and maintaining protective embankments. The AP also stated that there can be no question of diversion of Godavari waters into Krishna unless Polavaram project is cleared for FRL +150ft and subject to such safeguards as the tribunal may provide so as to give effect to all the agreements without detriment to any of the parties (Para 123 of the Tribunal report)

1980: During the President rule in Orissa, a middle level engineer was deputed on behalf of Orissa state government to sign on agreement along with AP and Madhya Pradesh and Central government on Polavaram project. The Government of India gave in writing on 26-3-1980 that Polavaram dam with FRL at +150ft. is technically feasible.But Environmental safety was ignored

In the final submissions before the Bachawat Tribunal the AP State Government demanded on 25-2-1980 the tribunal that since both the upper states have agreed for permanent submersion of their lands upto +150ft the tribunal may permit submersion of lands in Orissa and Madhya Pradesh upto 175ft but it is not accepted because submersion had to be prevented by construction of embankments as suggested by the Central Water Commission with adequate pumping arrangements and drainage sluices.
Thus the interstate agreement envisaged that AP state will submit proposals for Polavaram dam within 3 months of the agreement made by all the 5 river basin states so that the CWC will clear the project as expeditiously as possible to enable the state Government to complete the project in time.Because of the Delay of the project by 25 years,all the legal and environmental hurdles have cropped up such as increse of peak floods from 36 to 50 lakhs cusecs and the consequential increse in submersion levels in upper states,making Bachawat Award conditions invalid.In fact,the villages likely to be submerged rose from 275 estimated in 1980 to 340 by 2010.This additional submersion of lands and villages is not acceptable to theorissa and chattisgarh states and it amounts to violation of conditions of the Bachawat Tribunal of April.1980.

30-4-1983: Dr.K.L.Rao warned that Polavaram dam is under-designed and is unworkable. He expressed strong opposition to the Dam because of various reasons like under-designed spillway for the higher levels of peak floods expected to occur in the near future.see annexure below for more details on defective designs

1985 : Detailed project report [DPR]of Polavaram project completed

1987 : Project Report [DPR]submitted to the CWC

1996 : R&R reports prepared through Centre for Evaluation of Socio-Economic Studies.These study reports were never updated on the basis of upgrading peak flood from 36 lakhs cusecs in 1980 to50 lakhs cusecs in 2006 by A.P.state Engineers and also the Central water Commission without the consent of Orissa and Chattisgarh states as per the conditions of the Bachawat tribunal Award
1996 :Dr.K.Sriramakrishnayya,irrigation Advisor to A.P.state Government strongly opposed polavaram dam for several reasons and suggested that it should be left to be decided by the future generations]for details see his report presented in brief elsewhere under these web sites on polavaram dam]
June, 1999: Dam Break Analysis report for Polavaram by National Institute of Hydrology, Roorkee, a wing of Union Ministry of Water Resources at the request of the Environmental Protection Training and Research Institution (EPTRI) of the AP State Government which was interested with the preparation of environmental impact assessment report for Polavaram dam project.

2002 : EIA-EMP reports prepared by the  Environment Protection Training &Research Institute[EPTRI],Hyderabad are  incomplete as they were based on  old and incomplete data of 1996

16-09-2005 : The AP State Governsment was in a great hurry to start construction work on Polavaram dam and since EPTRI was a professionally qualified organization it wanted sufficient time to prepare the EIA report by conducting fresh field studies to upgrade the project report .But the irrigation Secretaries were impatient and they wanted to somehow get a routine report on EIA done by other agencies who were willing to prepare the project in a shorter time for the routine purpose of submitting the project to the Union Ministry of Environment to secure the Environmental clearance within the shortest possible time.
 Naturally the EIA-EMP partly prepared by EPTRI was handed over to  M/s AFC Ltd. Hyderabad for updating the same and  this organization did not have sufficient number of experts in the different fields of ecology, hydrology and environmental sciences and engineering as experts who could beconsidered qualified as envisaged by article 45 of the Evidence Act. The relevant reports were not prepared in a comprehensive manner as per rules and regulations and without proper assessment of the dam break analysis report, risk analysis report, disaster management report and Environmental Management report including the different alternatives thoroughly analyzed for the Polavaram dam project . Hence such incomplete reporters were submitted by the AP State Government to the Union Ministry of Environment for obtaining environmental clearance in a great hurry.

4, 5-09-2005 : The Expert Committee constituted by the MoEF visited the project site. If the expert committee was composed of highly technical experts they would have realized that the mighty Godavari river is coming down from upland hills into the plains in the close proximity of developing towns like Rajahmundry and industrial towns like Kovvur . They would have suggested that for transfer of Godavari water into Krishna river the construction of a barrage as previously recommended by the central Water Commission experts who were stalwarts in irrigation with vast field experience also like Dr.A.N.Khosla, Mr.Gulhati, Mr,AC Mitra and Dr.KL Rao would be ideal for the purpose. If a storage reservoir was needed they would have recommended for construction of masonry or concrete dam at Polavaram  as conceived in 1945 to ensure safety of lakhs of people living downstream of the dam. They would have pointed out that an earth-cum-rockfill dam as a storage reservoir at Polavaram will be a hazardous dam in view of the threat to the lives of millions of people living downstream due to the collapse of the dam due to a maximum credible accident caused by either extreme floods, earthquakes, construction defects or human failures. This expert committee has committed a high scientific and technical blunder in approving a highly risky earth-cum-rockfill dam that poses a serious threat to thelives of lakhs of local people and their properties and particularly when the river contains more than 200ft depth of sand which poses a threat to the safety of a big and a lengthy storage reservoir.

10-09-2005 : APPCB publishes notification for public hearing to be held on 10-10-05

16-09-2005 : Application for site clearance filed

16-09-2005 : EIA submitted to MoEF.The Ministry should not have been taken up the sscrutiny of the EIA reports  in the absence of similar EIA  reports from Orissa and Chattisgarh states with their consents for this project and the Ministry itself violated Environmental Rules for this project

16-09-2005 : Chief Engineer, Indira Sagar Project, wrote to Member Secretary Orissa Pollution Control Board seeking clearance.He should have personally gone to make necessary arrangements for the purpose

17-09-2005: MoEF asks clarifications on EIA. It is very surprising to know that when the EIA report is submitted ti it,the Ministry of Environment even without studying such a voluminous report foridentifying the crucial parameters that influence the environmental clearence has ventured to ask clarifications on the various non-critical issues presented in the EIA report. If the EIA report is studied properly the real questions that should have been asked for clarifications should have been on the dam break analysis report and its critical implications for preparing the risk analysis report as well as the disaster management reports. Important questions should have been asked on the implications of the interstate legal problems under the Bachawat Award and the conditions of the Award and the methods adopted to resolve the problems such as preparation of backwater level estimations as approved by the Central Water Commission as stipulated by the Bachawat Award and the details of submersion including displacement of people in Orissa and Chattisgarh. Questions should have been raised about the nature and magnitude of embankments proposed to prevent submersion of lands and villages in the upper states and the Environmental Impact Assessment report on the series of many dams proposed for the purpose. The fundamental question that should have been asked must be concernbed about  public hearings and whether they  have been conducted in Orissa and Chattisgarh  as per rules because that is a pre-requisite for environmental appraisal to be made by the committee on the EIA report and its contents. Unfortunately these relevant questions have been never asked for clarifications  and it indicates that the MoEF decided to to grant blindly the clearence for the project.

19-09-2005: MoEF gives site clearance. MoEF should not have given the site clearance without assessing the implications of selecting a wrong site and for a wrong type of irrigation project which should have been based upon a deeper consideration on the safety aspectsof the dam and the people and their properties in the neighbourhood of the project. This aspect assumes serious importance particularly when the AP State has got dam break analysis repsort prepared for this project by the National Institute of Hydrolology, Roorkee in June 1999 and the details were available for the asking to know that in case the dam were to fail the consequences will be disastrous resulting in the death of 50 lakhs of people and economic losses of Rs.1 lakh crroes.

28-09-2005: CWC granted" in principle clearance " to the Polavaram project. It is shocking to know that the Central Water Commission which has the basic responsibility to ensure the safety of the dam has not perhaps utilized the services of its own dam safety organization establish by the Union Ministry of Water Resources. By June 1999 the dam Break Analysis report for Polavaram dam project was prepared by the National Institute of Hydrology, Roorkee which is also under the jurisdiction of the Union Ministry of Water Resources and if only the CWC has looked into this report they would have realized that this Polavaram dam project should not be cleared because it poses a serious threat to the life of lakhs of people living downstream of the dam.

29-09-2005: Chief Engineer, Indira Sagar project writes to District Collector, Malkangiri, Orissa seeking rehabilitation details. The AP state Government should have personally deputed the Irrigation Minister, the Secretaries and the Project Engineers to hold personal discussions with the Orissa State Government to obtain their help instead of writing a formal letter.

10-10-2005: Public hearing held at 5 places in E.Godavari, W.Godavari, Khammam, Visakhapatnam and Krishna (Excluding Orissa and Chattisgarh). These public hearings were not organized by supplying the crucial information on the dam break analysis repsort, Risk Analysis Reports , Disaster Management Reports to create proper awareness among the people about the damaging impacts of the project and the remedial measures that the government proposes to take safeguard public health and welfare and to protect the valuable properties of the people including the crops and animal populations.

18-10-2005 : AP Pollution Control Board grants consent letter to establish the project. The AP Pollution Control Board did not apply its mind to grasp the implications of the dam break analysis report prepared for Polavaram project in June 1999 which clearly shows that the inflow design flood for the reservoir was estimated by the Union Government experts as 60lakh cusecs while the Polavaram spillway design was made only for 36 lakh cusecs and that the design of the dam is based on 500-year return flood while the standards of the CWC and the Indian Standard Institutes insist on using Probable Maximum Flood (PMF) for the design of the dam. Since the dam is under designed it is bound to collapse one day or the other resulting in the death of 50 lakhs of people and economic loss of over Rs.1 lakh crores of rupees. Under these conditions how can responsible and accountable experts of the AP State Pollution Control Board technical committees and the AP State Pollution Control Board itself given clearance for such a project?

19-10-2005: A power point presentation was given in the Expert Committee meeting held at the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF).Naturally several crucial areas of Environmental importance were omitted

20-10-2005: Replies to the casual queries posed by the uninformed Experts were submitted to MoEF.

25-10-2005: Ministry of Environment and Forest granted  blindly Environmental clearance. The experts of the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest did not applied their minds to grasp the implications of the Dam Break Analysis report prepared for Polavaram project in June 1999 which clearly shows that the inflow design flood for the reservoir was estimated by the Union Government experts as 60lakh cusecs while the Polavaram spillway design was made only for 36 lakh cusecs and that the design of the dam is based on 500-year return flood while the standards of the CWC and the Indian Standard Institutes insist on using Probable Maximum Flood (PMF) for the design of the dam. Since the dam is under designed it is bound to collapse one day or the other resulting in the death of 50 lakhs of people and economic loss of over Rs.1 lakh crores of rupees.

Without verifying whether public hearings have been conducted on the Environmental Impact Assessment report in the areas likely to be affected in the states of Orissa and Chattisgarh how could the Environmental Appraisal committee make an appraisal of this project?

Under these conditions how can responsible and accountable experts of the Union Ministry of Environment and the Union Ministry of Environment itself given clearance for such a hazardous project by violating the rules and regulations under the Environmental Protection Act?

12-12-2005: Application for forest clearance

February, March-2006: AP High Court hears a batch of writ petitions filed by some political parties opposing the project and the judgment was reserved
March 2006 :Orissa High Court passes Orders not to allow submersion of landsin Orissa

27-04-2006: Central Empowered Committee (CEC) of Supreme Court advises Andhra Pradesh Government to stop works of the project when it heard objections raised by tribal rights activists and environmentalists

30-04-2006: Andhra Pradesh Government complies with CEC suggestion and stops the project works

10-07-2006: Central wildlife board gives clearance

29-07-2006: The CEC of SC tours Andhra Pradesh and visits the project sites.

22-03-2006: Orissa High Court passes orders over a writ petition restraining AP state from submerging lands in Orissa due to Polavaram Project.

25-04-2006: MOEF accepts Orissa High Court order and informs AP state to make it an addendum to Environment clearance granted to A.P.state for polavaram dam in its  letter dt. 25-10-2005
2007 Union Ministry of Tribal Affairs  blindly gives clearence to polavaram dam,violating tribal policy norms
19-12-2007: The Appellate Authority found that “No public hearing was conducted in the areas affected due to the proposed mega project in Orissa and Chattisgarh neither did the affected persons have any access to the executive summary of the project in the notified place nor did they have any opportunity to participate in public hearing and express their view on the environment impact of the area.

Now the Andhra Government will have to talk to Orissa and Chattisgarh  stateGovernments or in otherwise, it will have to redraw the design of the project to meet the conditions stipulated by the Orissa  High court not to cause submersion of any land in Orissa due to polavaram project It means that the delay in the project is certain to occur in any case.

10-01-2009: To avoid submersion in Orissa AP state proposes Rs.600 CroresRs.700crore embankments project and submits to MOEF for Environmental clearance. Although the CWC has suggested to the AP State Governmentto construct Embankments in Orissa to implement the Orissa High Court Order on construction of Polavaram dam without causing submersion of lands and villages in Orissa ,it is a dangerous suggestion madeby CWC due to lack of scientific knowledge and field experience about several cases of miserable failures of embankments as flood protection measures in many states in India. Since Orissa state Government has vast experience on the failures of embankments as flood protection measures the Orissa state refuses to accept the AP State Government proposal to build embankments as flood protection measures along Sabari river and Sileru rivers in Orissa. For more details see ANNEXURE-2 below.

15-01-2009: For consideration  of granting clearence to polavaram Dam by the TAC ,theUnion Ministry of Water Resources asked  MoEF about the status of Environmental clearance for the combined Project.

20-01-2009: MoEF Considers that embankments project is treated as change of scope of Polavaram and wants fresh Environmental Appraisal of Polavaram.project

21-01-2009: But TAC of Ministry of Water Resources  suprisingly gives conditional clearance without waiting for grant of supplemental Environmental clearance for Polavaram. project This is very unethical,immoral and unjust because without the environmental clearance for the project which is dependent upon the consent of the people in the areas likely to be affected in many villages of Orissa and Chattisgarh the Ministry of Environment cannot clear the project and without this clearance  from MOEF,the technical advisory committee [TAC]of the Union Ministry of Water Resources cannot approve the project and the Union Ministry of Water resources cannot recommend the project for the Planning Commission. But in this case the TAC blindly cleared the project  by violating all the  rules and procedures under pressure from vested interests and such actions are detrimental to public health and welfare and national interests..

17-02-2009: Environmental Appraisal committee considers Embankments project and directs AP to get public hearings conducted in Orissa and Chattisgarh since the Embankments will have to be constructed in those states and without the cooperation of the local people and the states the project cannot succeed..
25-02-2009 :Planning Commission  blindly gives investment clearence to polavaram Dam project

09-03-2009: MoEF directs AP to get consent for Embankments project from Orissa and Chattisgarh to construct 30km embankments over Sabari and Sileru

10-10-2009: APGENCO submitted detailed project report for Polavaram Hydro-power plant of 960MW for clearance from Central Electricity Authority.

16-03-2010: Central Electricity Authority(CEA) return the Detailed Project Report(DPR) for Polavaram Hydro-power plant for resubmission after obtaining Hydrological clearance from Central Water Commission

26-04-2010: Union Minister of State for Electricity Shri.B.S.Solanki answered in Rajyasabha to question by Nandi Yellayya that AP State has not furnished information and did not resubmit DPR for hydropower unit of Polavaram project for clearance by the CEA(see Eenadu,dt.27-4-2010)

27-04-2010: Petition filed by Chattisgarh Environmental Protection Board for transferring cases pending against Polavaram project in AP High Court to the Supreme Court is posted for hearing during August 2010.

28-7-2010 : Forest clearence for Polavaram granted by MoEF,as final clearance

1-11-2010: MoEF issues warning Notice to A.P.State faulting its action in going ahead with polavaram dam work by violating conditions of Environmental clearence by not holding Public Hearings in Orissa and Chattisgarh even after 2 years

24-11-2010       Center asks AP to discuss with Orissa and Chattisgarh and find a mutually agreeable solution to Polavaram dam issue being heard by Supreme Court.

July, 1941
Original conceptualization of project by the then Madras Presidency
Sir SV Rama Murthy proposed a Ramapadasagar scheme with 130meters dam height and a 1500MW of power generation capacity, but it was not pursued due to geological reasons.
A technical committee headed by AC Mitra recommended a barrage at Polavaram to irrigate uplands.
April, 1969
Godavari Water Disputes Tribunal was formed
Andhra Pradesh government named the project as Polavaram and made a case before the tribunal for river control work at Polavaram
Andhra Pradesh presented a project report for Polavarasssm barrage with 145ft height dam and two canals.
Andhra Pradesh submitted another project report to the Central Water Commission for construction of earth-cum-rock fill dam at 150ft height
Inter-state agreements with Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Orissa with a dam height of 150ft. CWC considered project as a barrage and hence accepted 36 lakhs cusecs as the spillway design flood for Polavaram.
Agreements placed before Godavari Tribunal and finalized
Dr.K.L.Rao reiterates that Polavaram is under-designed and unsafe.
Detailed project report of Polavaram project completed
Project Report submitted to the CWC
R&R reports prepared through Centre for Evaluation of Socio-Economic Studies
June, 1999
Dam Break Analysis report for Polavaram by National Institute of Hydrology, Roorkee, a wing of Union Ministry of Water Resources
EIA-EMP prepared by Environment Protection Training & Research Institute based on data of 1996
 April, 2005
 AP STate submitted updated and revised Detailed Project, CWC
EIA-EMP updated by M/s AFC Ltd. Hyderabad during 2005 submitted to MoEF including an incomplete report on dam-break analysis.
The Expert Committee constituted by the MoEF visited the project site.
APPCB publishes notification for public hearing to be held on 10-10-05
Application for site clearance filed
EIA submitted to MoEF
Chief Engineer, Indira Sagar Project, wrote to Member Secretary Orissa Pollution Control Board seeking clearance.
MoEF asks clarifications on EIA
MoEF gives site clearance
Central Water Commission,CWC grants 'in principle clearence"to polavaram
C.E.,Polavaram, writes to Collector, Malkangiri, for rehabilitation details
Public hearing held at 5 places in E.Godavari, W.Godavari, Khammam, Visakhapatnam and Krishna (Excluding Orissa and Chattisgarh)
AP Pollution Control Board grants consent letter to establish the project
A power point presentation given in the Expert Committee meeting held at Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF)

Replies to the queries posed by the Experts submitted to MoEF
Ministry of Environment and Forest clearance
Application for forest clearance
February, March-2006
AP High Court hears a batch of writ petitions filed by some political parties opposing the project and the judgment reserved
Central Empowered Committee (CEC) of Supreme Court advises Andhra Pradesh Government to stop works of the project when it heard objections raised by tribal rights activists and environmentalists
Andhra Pradesh Government complies with CEC suggestion and stops the project works
Central wildlife board gives clearance
29-07- 2006
The CEC of SC tours Andhra Pradesh and visits the project sites.
Orissa High Court passes orders over a writ petition restraining AP from submerging lands in Orissa due to Polavaram Project.


MoEF accepts Orissa High Court order and informs AP state to make it an addendum to Environment clearance letter dt. 25-10-2005
CWC advises AP State to avoid submersion as per Orissa High Court Order of March 2006 by constructing embankments in Orissa
To avoid submersion in Orissa AP state proposes Rs.600 crore embankments project and submits to MoEF for Environmental clearance
For consideration by the TAC Union Ministry of Water Resources asks MoEF on the status of Environmental clearance for combined Project
MoEF Considers that embankments project is treated as change of scope of Polavaram and wants fresh Environmental Appraisal of Polavaram.
But TAC of Ministry of Water Resources gives conditional clearance without waiting for supplemental environmental clearance for Polavaram.

Environmental Appraisal committee considers Embankments project and directs AP to get public hearings conducted in Orissa and Chattisgarh.
Planning Commission gives investment clearance for Polavaram dam
MoEF directs AP to get consent for Embankments project from Orissa and Chattisgarh to construct 30km embankments over Sabari and Sileru
APGENCO submitted detailed project report for Polavaram Hydro-power plant of 960MW for clearance from Central Electricity Authority.
Orissa High Court bench admits petition against Polavaram and issues notices to AP state, Orissa and Central Government officials. Orissa filed a suit in Supreme Court (February) for suspending of work on Polavaram
NGO of Hong Kong request PM to stop acquisition of Tribal land for construction of Polavaram under copy to MOTA and HR Commission.
Central Electricity Authority(CEA) return the Detailed Project Report(DPR) for Polavaram Hydro-power plant for resubmission after obtaining Hydrological clearance from Central Water Commission
Union Minister of State for Electricity Shri.B.S.Solanki answered in Rajyasabha to question by Nandi Yellayya that AP State has not furnished information and did not resubmit DPR for hydropower unit of Polavaram project for clearance by the CEA(see Eenadu,dt.27-4-2010)


Petition filed by Chattisgarh to transfer NEAA case toSupreme Court
Forest clearence for polavaram granted by MoEF,as final clearence
MoEF issues warning Notice to A.P.State faulting its action in going ahead with polavaram dam work by violating conditions of Environmental clearence by not holding Public Hearings in Orissa and Chattisgarh even after 2 years

Center asks AP to discuss with Orissa and Chattisgarh and find a mutually agreeable solution to Polavaram dam issue being heard by Supreme Court.

One instance of the abnormal degree of arrogance exhibited by the AP Engineers and officials can be seen from the following statement made by the AP state Secretary for irrigation Mr.Satish Chandra, IAS about the agreement between the basin states reached in 1980 and he says thus

“Thus agreement has been incorporated in the Bachawat Tribunal Award and this was taken note by the CWC. As now there are no fresh interstate disputes on the Polavaram project, there is no necessity to obtain clearance from any of these states” He further said that Bachawat Tribunal has sorted out all the problems and that the tribunal has clarified thus “Already the issue of submergence on Polavaram project has been sorted out between AP, Madhya Pradesh and Orissa as per the agreements placed before the tribunal and so it is beyond out that the Polavaram project is being taken up intune with the interstate agreements and Bachawat Tribunal award. The spillway has been designed as per interstate agreement made in 1980 and there is no violation of either interstate agreement or Bachawat Tribunal Award in this regard”

Unfortunately this arrogant view of AP state Government officials and engineers is the biggest stumbling block in getting the project materialized for the benefit of the farmers of the state. The AP state is blind to the fact that neither the spillway design is safe nor is the Bachawat Tribunal Award valid today because the primary condition of the award dealing with the spillway design peak flood of 36 lakh cusecs of April 1980 was changed to 50 lakhs cusecs without consulting Orissa and Chattisgarh and hence they filed a case in the Supreme Court against the project. In order to avoid confrontation with the upper basin sates in holding public hearings on the project as per rules and regulations. It is better for the AP State Government to redesign the project to avoid submersion in Orissa as ordered by the Orissa High Court in March 2006 and for this purpose the existing killer dam must be modified into a multiple barrages project to achieve the same economic benefits at a much lesser cost and in a more safer way in tune with the Environmental philosophy of development without destruction.



One special working group was constituted to reexamine the Lalpur dam project as a result of public agitation against the project for its reconsideration from the environmental, ecological and financial angles. The project is a composite dam with masonry dam of 315m length and earthen dams on either side of 1717m. It has 30km right canal and 6km left canal with irrigable area of 36,400 ha. The gross capacity of the reservoir is 380 Mm3 including live storage of 320Mm3. The reservoir will submerge 25 villages and 3500 ha of land (including 2200ha of cultivable land), 1050 houses, 16public buildings, one temple, 11km of roads. The displaced persons numbering 7800 will be resettled in 8 villages. The project cost is Rs.25.26 crores and it was cleared by the Planning Commission in 1978.

Public Agitation: Local MPs and MLAs and Panchayat representatives were agitating against the project and gave a memorandum to the Prime Minister on 9-3-1980. Affected tribals represented in 1978 suggested 4 weirs on the tributaries of Heran river instead of one dam across Heran river at Lalpur village. When local MP suggested for 4 weirs but project authorities refused the proposal. Public filed a case against the dam in the High Court at Ahmedabad and the case was heard on 29-2-1980. The petitioners met the Union Minister for Irrigation andPower in August 1980 and settled for an agreement to reduce FRL of dam from 146m to 142.75m at Lalpur and construct another dam upstream to irrigate 15000 acres . Half of the land to be submerged will be compensated by allotting land in the project command area by passing a law on the pattern followed in Maharashtra.

The High Court ordered that mutual consultations to resolve the problem. By 1981-82 cost of the project rose to Rs.50 crores. The project authorities agreed to lower FRL from 146 to 142.75m and to compensate for the loss in storage another dam with storage of 115Mm3 will be constructed at Kara with submergence of 1125ha When people agitate against Kara project FRL at Kara reservoir was lowered from 238m to 235m. Storage at Lalpur got reduced from 318Mm3 to 218Mm3 and consequently the irrigable area was reduced from 39500 acres to 26, 800 acres.

Environmental Issues: After field inspection the working group made EIA reports on 2 alternatives namely Lalpur dam with lowered height of FRL 142.75m and series of small dams on Heran river and its tributaries above the Lalpur dam site.

Rehabilitation: On 14-8-1980 Union government suggested the first optionof Lalpur dam with FRL at 142.75m along with Kara dam with FRL at 238.00m. The second alternative suggested by Harivallabh Parikh is to construct 5 small dams at Kara, Raipur, Huktu, Dudhava and Khantiyawat along with a dam of Lower height at Lalpur.

The original proposal sanctioned by Planning Commission in April 1978 for Lalpur dam with FRL 146.3 is now abandoned. On 7-8-1981 the working group asked the project authorities to give details on submergence and lands to be irrigated by conducting surveys of the alternate sites. But when the survey party went to Kara dam site they were beaten up by the local people and not allowed to conduct the survey. The working group felt that the project can be launched successful after convincing the beneficiaries of the genuine benefits to be derived from the project, particularly when the benefits are substantial.

The following are the recommendations of the working group.

There is a general agreement on the need for optimal utilization of the waters of Heran river and its tributaries. This can be achieved through 2 options.

a) A high dam across river at lalpur village with its Full Reservoir Level varying between 122m to 142.75m as against the sanctioned FRL of 146m as sanctioned by the Planning commission along with kara dam with FRL 238.00m. or

b) A series of 5 small dams on the river Heran and its tributaries along with a small dam on Heran river at Lalpur village.

In the absence of field data the working group was not in a position to suggest specified heights of the dams including the one at Lalpur. However the guiding criterion for selection of the dam height must be optimal water utilization to benefit largest number of tribals and the design to exclude from submersion any particular property or human settlement.

In this connection Mrs.Indira Gandhi, Prime Minsiter took personal interest in understanding the reasons behind the public agitations against the Lalpur dam and found it necessary to take adequate measures to protect Environment and to resolve the problems raised by the local people to the satisfaction of all the parties. In this connection she sent her note from the Prime Minister’s Office which runs as follows.

Mrs.Indira Gandhi’s Prime Minister’s Office Note on Lalpur Dam

One of the main points urged by the representationists is that while the tribal areas will be submerged, the benefit of the project will go largely to the rich farmers. The note of the Irrigation Ministry, however, shows that while 3503ha of land will be submerged, the annual irrigation would be 36.422ha of which over 10,000ha will be in the tribal areas. If so, there may be substantial benefit to the tribals also as a result of the project. This could be brought to the notice of the representationists. It would also be desirable to work out schemes whereby those whose lands and houses are submerged in the project are not only adequately compensated and rehabilitated, but are also helped to secure some benefits as a result of the execution of the project itself to the extent possible. This could be done, for instance, by allotting Government and waste land in the project command to those whose land has been submerged etc. Prime Minister would like this to be examined urgently.

While on this point, Prime Minister has suggested early consideration of the general issue which arises in the case of large irrigation projects. Issues of conflict of interest between those who benefit from such projects and those who lose as a result of submergence of land are bound to arise. While these projects do provide for payment of compensation etc. to those whose lands get submerged, this really does not solve their problem. The only real way in which the problem can be solved to the satisfaction of those, whose lands are likely to be submerged is to create in them an interest in the execution of the project. As suggested earlier, Government and waste lands in the command areas could be assigned to these displaced persons. In many cases, however, such lands may not be available. It might be worthwhile to think of the system in which at least the larger land holders in the command area are compelled to part with a part of their land for the purpose of resettling the displaced persons. This could be made a condition for the inclusion of their lands within the command and since the productive capacity of the land would go up enormously as a result of the irrigation, they would certainly not lose by this. If necessary, the compensation paid for acquiring land from the water spread area could be used to finance this operation.

While approving the suggestion that Department of Irrigation should examine this further and take speedy steps in this regard, Prime Minister has pointed out how such suggestions are seldom implemented and how we need to go more thoroughly into such schemes to ensure protection to the weakest sections even before final sanction of such projects.


Embankments do not provide Protection against floods– a Case  Study of Brahmaputra river,ASSAM :

The short term ad hoc type of flood protection measures so far adopted in the case of the Brahmaputra, especially the extensive network of earthen embankments around 5000k.m., has deleterious impact on the regime of river, more specially its aggradations ,thus contributing to further intensification of flood hazard potential of the valley.

Embankments changed behavior of rivers for the worst:
The 1986 Assam Flood Expert Committee has aptly brought out the problems .It has been observed that the embankments have changed the behaviour of the rivers towards worst. And therefore, suggested that no more embankments should be constructed to avoid a deterioration of the situation.
The Rastriya Barh Ayog has grimly warned that a stage may come when it may no longer be possible to contain the river by embankment. Former Chief Secretary H.N. Das while venting his opinion in The Economic Times 29th Nov’1998 wrote “Build a Dam and be Damned”.

By obstructing Natural drainage Channels the Embankments cause more flood damages to people
Ill effects can be seen from the accompanying illustration. The embankment leads to high flood level within the embanked area, resulting in rise of river beds with consequent reduction of fertility of land behind the embankment. In case of a breach, the flood water submerges the surroundings sometimes with devastating potential. Drainage congestion is a major problem due to construction of embankment even after the flood water has receded. Water in the surrounding areas does not have an outlet.

The sluices provided become non-operational for various reasons. This results in rising of river beds and narrowing of the channel. The water logging is another problem in embankment construction. It aids in aggrading the river beds, silt which used to be deposited in the plains, now drops inside the river channels. The land drainage pattern gets changed drastically because all streams are now guarded by marginal embankments.

 Embankment structures like small Dams are mostly Failures in many states
Construction of embankment widely adopted as structural measures of flood management though has provided reasonable degree of protection. There are 31.5 lakh ha. of chronically flood prone areas in the state. Some 50% of this area i. e. 16.3 lakh ha. are protected by constructing 4450 km. of embankments. The efficacy of embankment has also become a controversial and debatable topic on the ground of:
• loss of land for construction and resettlement
• risk and effects of sudden embankment failure
• disruption of fish breeding cycle between rivers and flood plain
• increased flooding in unprotected areas
• loss of sediment for nutrient and land building.
• Reduced passage for flow of flood water and consequent rise of the level of flood waters,
• Drainage congestion behind the embankment
• Gradual rise of river beds due to silting.

Breaches in Embankments cause more floods:
Usually construction of embankment and associated flood mitigation methods results in general increase of water levels unless suitable long term measure like storage reservoir or channel improvements are provided. Till now the embankment have been adopted as an alternative to long term solution in the Brahmaputra valley. This sometimes leads to disastrous situation due to breaches of embankments. I fact, the popular feeling in Assam today is that embankment themselves have become a major factor for causing floods and people would be much better off without them. The 1986 Assam Flood Expert Committee strongly felt “that the embankments have changed the behavour of Assam rivers towards worst .No more embankment should be constructed to avoid a deterioration of situation.”

Causes of Embankment  Dam  Failures:
The Problems of the Embankments Failure are, such as:
¨ Failure due to piping
¨ Cutting of embankment by antisocial elements for quick relief,
¨ Cutting of toe by cultivators leading to exposure of the hydraulic gradient,
¨ Erosion of embankment river current,
¨ Improper maintenance,
¨ Use of substandard construction materials,
¨ Use for temporary shelter when villages are inundated,
¨ Accumulation of rain water due absence or inadequate cross drainage facility.

Deforestation causes accelerated  floods:
Human intervention and depredation in the watersheds also aggravate the problem.. The most serious environmental problem now facing on earth is deforestation. This part of world is not lagging behind either. The size of the problem can only be understood from an historical perspective. Few decades ago the entire region has been unrecognizably densely wooded with most human activities seemingly conducted within interminable forestland. Today that scenario is no longer existing.

What is so alarming is the rate of tree felling in the hill States. It is so rapid that doubt has been raised whether we will ever be able to make amends for the harm that has been done. Its effects, if unchecked, are most certain to bring about permanent ecological harm with dramatic increase in flooding problem. According to a report “the State of India’s Environment,1987” by an NGO, it is understood that from Kashmir to Assam the story is the same. Below 2000metres there is literally no forest left. In the middle Himalayan belt which rises to an average height of 3000 metres, the forest area, originally estimated at being a third of the total areas , has reduced to a mere 6.8%. We are seeing the serious consequences arising when the trees, termed as natures’ own flood barriers are felled. Because of denudation of forest cover the surface runoff has considerably increased leading to devastating floods in recent days.

Embankments serve vested interests like contractors and Engineers while being detrimental to public interests:
The construction of embankments as flood control measures failed to serve the purpose for which it was meant .As mentioned above it has most deleterious effects. In that context the Planning Commission, Government of India took a strong view as under: The government must ban further construction of embankments by unthinking engineers, supported by politicians and officials, who do not understand the hydrology of rivers. It should also include social scientists, environmentalists and geographers in developing strategies to deal with the situation .Otherwise both flood relief and fund meant for embankments are likely to go to corrupt and well-connected, and death and devastation in Assam will continue.”

Underestimated Inflow Design Flood (IDF)   used  for Polavaram Dam, leading to its collapse
(See pages 19 and 20)
Dams must safely accommodate maximum flood flows without causing danger to lives of people and animal populations and properties in the downstream side of the dam. Engineers must select inflow design flood of such magnitude that will not cause collapse of the dam which causes disastrous consequences.  Most often IDF for spillway design is based upon the Engineers view of cutting down the costs of a technically desirable safe dam for convenience of obtaining financial sanctions from the Government and so several dams collapsed due to such defective designs.   According to International Standards the incremental hazard evaluation approach must be used to estimate the appropriate IDF for ensuring the safety of the dam. 
Probable Maximum Flood (PMF) must be adopted as the IDF in case of dams where their collapses due to use of floods lesser than the PMF cause serious loss of life and properties that are unacceptable. Sometimes flood magnitudes lesser than the Probable Maximum Flood are used for the design of the dams where there are no permanent villages towns and industries exist or projected to be located within the potential hazard area in the foreseeable future.  
Incremental increase of flood due to dam burst must be within two feet:
If the dam break analysis shows  downstream incremental increases of flood of about 2ft. or more. Engineering judgement and more analysis is required to make necessary modifications to the dam so that the modified dam even if were to fail does not cause unacceptable damaging consequences to lives of people and properties.  However the 2 foot increment in the flood  caused by the transformation of the water stored in the reservoir into a dynamic flood should not be taken as a standard figure since it could be less and for this purpose sensitive analysis and engineering judgement are the best tools for making a final decision in public interests. 
Meteorologists are the appropriate experts to estimate the peak floods:
In the case of the Polavaram dam the AP State Engineering Experts and the experts of the Central Water Commission have miserably failed to make scientific estimations of the Probable Maximum Flood and the Inflow design flood (IDF).  In Western countries the Meteorologists are taken as the concerned subject experts to estimate the Probable Maximum Precipitation in a given catchment and are allotted the specialized work of estimating the Probable Maximum Flood and this value is taken by the irrigation engineers for the design of the dams.  One does not go to a lawyer for medical surgery nor does one approach a medical practitioner for legal advice.
Improper decisions on development projects need to be corrected:
But in India sometimes these norms are not followed with the result that people who do not qualify as experts under Section 45 of the Evidence Act are appointed as experts with the result that their half-baked advice causes failures of many developmental works  including the dams.  In the case of Polavaram dam the design criteria adopted is unscientific in terms of the estimation of the maximum flood made in 1995 for a spillway design flood of 36 lakh cusecs and again in August 2006 for a spillway design flood of 50 lakh cusecs which according to international standards works out to about 90 lakh cusecs.  Since Dr.K.L.Rao also warned about the defective design of the spillway of the Polavaram dam and predicted that it will not work, there is an urgent need to review the design and work out alternate schemes as demanded by the people 

 ANNEXURE-4  :     

Subject:     Design flood study for Polavaram project (Andhra Pradesh)

The  hydrological studies of Polavaram project are under examination. The project authorities had submitted the updated and revised project report in April 2005.  Though the comments on the revised project report were communicated to the project authorities from time to time, the replies to the comments were not found to be satisfactory, as these did not contain the updated studies with respect to the current data.  These studies were also not as per the prevailing design practices and provisions given in the relevant BIS code.
In the earlier studies, the project authorities proposed a design flood of 80,000 cumecs (36 lakh cusecs).  These studies were based on flood frequency approach and the observed data for the period 1981-1995 was used to obtain flood of 500 year return period.  Central Water Commission accepted this estimated flood of 80,000 cumecs in 1979.  From the records, it is found that this flood was accepted when the structure proposed at the project location was a barrage.  In the revised reports submitted earlier, same design flood i.e. 80,000 cumecs has been recommended and no revised studies were carried out.
The project authorities have now submitted the design flood studies for Polavaram project.  These studies have been examined and a brief is as given below.  The project report has been divided into seven chapters.  The extract of each chapter is explained below.
Chapter-1  contains the description of Godavari basin as a whole.  In this chapter the physiographic and climatic characteristics of the basin, relevant to hydrological studies have been described.
Chapter-2 describes the methods of estimating the design flood and also the design flood criteria as per BIS code 11223 – 1995 “Fixing the spillway capacity of the dams”.
Chapter-3  describes the estimation of design storm parameters.  In this chapter, details of observed rainfall for a number of stations in the basin have been given along with various statistical information such as, sub basin/district-wise normal monsoon rainfall etc. Storm studies have been carried out based on observed storm data for a number of heavy rainfall storms, likely to yield probable Maximum Precipitation (PMP).Storm of August 1986 has been finally considered as the candidate storm for working out Standard Project Precipitation (SPS) values.  This storm is said to cover 70% of total area.  Remaining 30% of the area is covered by independent catchment-specific storm data.  The justification of selecting the candidate storms has been given on page 39 and 40 of the report along with a reference to an international publication.  The project authorities discussed some aspects of storm studies during the course of their study and broad guidelines regarding framing this chapter was given by this Dte.      (Department).   The storm studies contained in chapter-3 are in order.
Chapter-4 describes the development of the flood model.  The entire catchments area has been sub-divided into 33 sub catchments, 10 sub basins and 8 nodal points.  The unit hydrographs for the sub catchments has been derived using the observed flood events.  The reasons for resorting to synthetic unit hydrograph method are presumed to be non-availability of requisite short interval rainfall data.  The flood model thus developed is by and large in order.   The criteria for adopting the channel routing parameters have also been described in Chapter-4 and are by and large in order.
Chapter-5 gives the computation details of working out flood of each sub-catchment, channel routing and reservoir routing of flood from each-sub-catchment to arrive at flood at the project location.  These computations are basically the product of unit hydrograph and storms studies.
As regards reservoir routing, it is observed that routing of inflows has been done at three reservoirs namely Nizam Sagar (Manjira), Sriram Sagar (Godavari) and Lower Manner (Manner). Routing  of floods for the projects in Maharashtra state has not been done, presumably due to want of requisite data from Maharashtra State Authority.
 The computational details of routing of inflow through Sriram Sagar and Lower Manner have been checked in the Department.  Using project specific data,  it is found that results given in the report are more or less similar to the results obtained in this Department, using specific reservoir data.  The procedure to compute the design flood is in order. 
As per the Hydl., studies carried out in this Department, the design flood peak for Polavaram project comes out to the order of 141535 (about 50 lakh cusecs) cumecs, against the value of 134858 cumecs (about 48 lakh cusecs) worked out by the project authority.
Chapter-6 gives the flood frequency studies using the annual flood peaks for the period 1972-2000 observed at project site.  Based on these studies, the summary of the result is given at page 271 of the report which estimates the design flood peak values from 85,000 cumecs to 1,68,000 cumecs depending upon the type of distribution and the return period. 
The flood frequency study for the purpose of PMF is only an academic exercise and is generally not recommended.  It is just to have some comparison of return period flood with PMF It is also to be seen that these flood peaks are the controlled releases from the upstream projects and do not give the natural behaviour of the flood phenomena of the entire basin and as such these estimates are biased estimates.  In view of above, the design flood peak of 141435 cumecs is recommended to be used in the design of spillway.
The flood hydrograph and flood hydrograph ordinates to be used in further studies corresponding to the revised flood peak are enclosed at annexure-I.
In addition to the above, the flood hydrograph and flood hydrograph ordinates corresponding 50- year return period are also enclosed.   In deriving 50-year return period flood  hydrograph, it is assumed that catchment downstream of Sriram Sagar project (constituting about 70% of the total catchment) contributes towards the 50 year return period flood and the flood generated from upstream catchment will be observed in the upstream absorbed in upstream reservoirs/channel.  The flood Hydrograph and flood hydrograph ordinates are enclosed at annexure-2
  1. The design flood studies have been carried out using synthetic unit hydrograph due to non-availability of short duration rainfall data.  These studies need to be validated as and when sufficient short duration rainfall data is collected.
  2. The routing parameters have been worked out assuming flood velocity in different segments of the catchment and general practices used to runoff data.  These studies may be viewed subsequently for the improvement, when all required data is available.
  3. In the present studies, reservoir routing of all the project have not been studied to ascertain the dampening effect.
Suggestions for review of design flood for upstream projects:
It is proposed that the project authorities may take up the review flood studies of major projects upstream of Polavaram.  This is important because Polavaram is a terminal project and in the event of higher flood impinging various project locations may cause a catastrophic cascade effect.  The studies carried out by project authorities indicate that flood of higher magnitude can hit at upstream locations.  To take necessary action against such eventualities it is essential that detailed flood studies may be carried out for all the major projects in the basin the design flood studies for the upstream projects have been carried at different points of time with different data sets and may have significant effect in view of the present studies carried out for Polavaram project.  On the basis of revised flood studies for all the upstream projects, where the spillway discharging capacity is short of revised  design flood, action plan can be prepared to handle higher design flood than the existing capacities.
This is issued with the approval of Chief Engineer (HSO), CWC.               
New Delhi                                                                                                      (RK GUPTA)   
Oct-Nov 2007                                                                                                    Director

Government admits wrong design  for Polavaram Dam
The Polavaram project is proposed to be located about 42 km upstream of Godavari Barrage at Dowlaiswaram, which was constructed during 1970’s. In the case of Godavari Barrage, a maximum flood discharge of 0.915 lakh cumec (32.30 lakh cusec) at a 200 year return period had been adopted. As the catchment area between Polavaram and Dowlaiswaram is so small that additional flood discharge will be nominal, it has been decided by the State to use the flood data available at Dowlaiswaram for the years from 1904 to 1975. Flood values prior to 1904, i.e., from 1881 to 1903 were estimated for increasing the length of the flood flow series to 95 years (1881 to 1975). The extended flood flow series has been analysed using Gumbel’s flood frequency analysis modified by Ven Te Chow to arrive at the flood flow values at various return periods. These are reproduced in the following Table.
Probable floods with their return periods
Return period (years)
Probable flood (lakh cumec)
Probable flood
 (lakh cusecs)

As per CWC criteria on the design flood, storages more than 61.67 Mm3 (50,000 Ac.ft.) have to be designed for the probable maximum flood or 1000 year return period flood whichever is higher. However, in view of the fact that the Polavaram project can be considered as a barrage for design flood purposes and also as the construction of upstream storages will reduce the flood intensity (the Polavaram project is the terminal reservoir on river Godavari), a design flood of 1.010 lakh cumec corresponding to 500 year return period is considered for spillway design.
Note: 1.   Instead of considering flood data for previous years until 1975 they should have considered subsequent peak floods from 1975 upto 2005 because the peak flood registers continual increases due to accelerated deforestation and environmental deterioration due to pollution, global warming as already stated. 
2.   It is wrong to consider the project as a barrage for estimation of peak flood and as a dam for other purposes, thereby AP State appears to have manipulated the designs because the peak flood of 36 lakh cusecs of 1980 was increased to 50 lakh cusecs in 2006.
The Earthen dams of three medium irrigation projects (namely Gundlavagu project and Palemvagu project and subbareddy sagar in East Godavari) constructed during the past four years in the state, have breached even without the designed maximum flood occurring. See the following websites for details:
http://www.hindu.com/2008/08/05/stories/2008080555900100.htm    (Palemvagu dam burst)
http://www.hindu.com/2010/09/01/stories/2010090163360500.htm                                                    (Subbareddy Sagar dam burst)
There are innumerable similar examples of dam breaks throughout the world. The recent one in India was the Morvi Earth dam (Gujarat) breach, which killed about 15,000 people. Earthen dams can also break due to reasons other than quality. That is why the recent international recommendation is to avoid as far as possible, construction of earthen dams in the close vicinity of thickly populated areas. Polavaram earthen dam sits just upstream of an extremely thick populated area.

 Water storage in the dam provides incremental floods: There is an argument that when a flood of 89 lakh cusecs occurs in the river, the areas on either side of the Godavari river will any way get flooded (with or without the dam), and the population will get effected since the protective flood banks are designed only for a maximum discharge of 36 lakh cusecs.The project Engineers are misleading the public in this crucial matter.
The project Engineers are hiding the fact that the water of 194 TMC stored behind the Dam will,in case  of Dam-burst ,gets converted into dynamic flood flow of about 24 lakhs cusecs which will get added to the naturally occuring flood and therby imposes additional flash floods taht maximise the risks to the people.
 But there is a difference between a sudden flash flood wave due to a dam break and a natural flood increase due to a n extreme flood under free-flow conditions without any obstruction like an Earth-cum-rockfill dam. In the case of a Polavaram dam break, the stored water of 194 TMC along with the huge flood of 89 lakh cusecs will flow down below as a gigantic wave, similar to the speeding Tsunami wave. People will have no time to leave their habitats. If such a dam- break occurs during the nights, 46.15 lakh people will have a watery grave within some few hours of occurring of the dam break. With regard to natural occurrence of 89 lakh cusecs, this slow-moving flood would occur gradually over a number of days and people will have enough time to observe the same, vacate their  houses and habitation colonies and move to the designated higher grounds nearby. It has happened similarly in Krishna Delta during the extraordinary floods that occurred in Krishna river in October 2009. In other words the increase in water levels does not happen suddenly in a few hours (unlike the dam burst  wall of water wave).

Polavaram Project - Problems
1.      Cannot be of much use without either Ichampalli or Bhoopalapatnam projects on the upstream.
2.      R & R problems, Coal belt, etc.
3.      Dam line requires changes.
4.      Flood management is a problem.
5.      The Irrigation is limited to 7.0lakh acres (75% this already under some sort of irrigation) and with only          seasonal power.
6.      80 TMC transfer to Krishna delta is at the time not much required.
7.      Godavari and Krishna deltas get affected (loss of khariff paddy in 4.0 lakh acres).
8.      Yeleru canals need to be remodelled (C.D.Works).
9.      Rail and Road bridges are to be remodelled.
10.  Drawing about 250 TMC during rainy season from Polavaram to Krishna river disturbs the irrigation systems and agriculture.
11.  Kolleru lake level raises.
12.  Upputeru capacity becomes inadequate.
13.  Budameru becomes a river of sorrow.
14.  Vijayawada city gets into danger of flooding.
15.  Industrial and other developments between V.T.P.S. and Vijayawada may face serious flood problems.
16.  Delinking the Krishna delta from Nagarjunasagar and          partly attaching it to polavaram results in diminishing the protective rights of Krishna delta.
17.  Problem of heavy silting.
The deltas suffer from the drainage generated from the Eastern ghats.  Further adding 250 TMC in khariff season is like driving the last nail.  Environmentalists are not addressing themselves to these more serious problems and the study is limited to the R & R problems of polavaram reservoir only.
All this effort at a cost of nearly Rs.10,000 crores is for limited unsustainable benefits resulting in permanent injury to delta ayacut and other sectors.
Strategically, to plan to transport nearly 250 TMC at the eastern slopes of the Eastern Ghats is suicidal for the entire rich basin upto the Bay of Bengal, apart from lurking danger to the life lines, the Trunk road, railway line, irrigation tanks and canals.  This area suffers from flood problems frequently which will become more intensive.
Having lost nearly 50 years over the mighty projects of Ichampalli and Polavaram (earlier Ramapadasagar) which could not be resolved even now due to :-
(a)    heavy investment,
(b)   less benefits,
(c)    unresolved inter-state problems,
(d)   unsurmountable problems relating to environment and ecology,
(e)    limited irrigation coverage of only 8 to 9 lakh acres,
(f)     inevitably of lift irrigation to serve further needy areas,
(g)    consequent increase in regional disparities, and
(h)    drought areas not getting any benefit, I have expalined the availability of water, the period, the location and feasibility to take up lift irrigation to begin with, leaving the construction of the reservoir at Ichampalli and Polavaram to the wisdom, talent and effort to the future generations.
The Godavari flows almost close to the northern border.  The water is to be transported to higher levels negotiating the rising topography and over long distances.
Lift irrigation is therefore a must and distances to be reached are great.  The following strategies are evolved and adopted.
New Techniques (Alternatives)
1.      Use of natural water resources to function as canal systems.
2.      Low head pumping arrangements.
3.      Storage reservoirs submerging only unproductive lands without much rehabilation problems. 
4.      Swapping of waters from one system to the other.
5.      Beneficiaries participation and management from investigation to execution and operation.
The study revealed that about 600 TMC can be pumped without any head works across the Godavari. Utilising streams as carriers of pumped water and swapping of water from one system to the other has resulted in considerable economy, least disturbance to the environment and need less maintenance.
The scheme to irrigate 58 lakh acres, providing 40 TMC for drinking and industries, 10 TMC to Hyderabad and 40 TMC to Rayalaseema is made out after detailed study of levels and topography.
The cost per acre is as low as Rs.11,000 to 12,000.  The total power required during 4 to 5 months of rainy season is about 3000 MW, which can be managed over a period of 15 to 20 years.  All clearances can easily be obtained since no inter-state problems are involved and only limited problems relating to environment are involved.
Water supply to the Hyderabad city can be had at 30 to 50% of the cost of bringing water from the Nagarjunasagar.
New financial instruments need to be developed.  The scheme can be financed by the beneficiaries, if only the required atmosphere is created by suitable steps like enactments of the required acts, etc.  The government can act as friend, philosopher and guide, generously lending financial. Administrative and technical support when needed at the right time.
-.Sriramakrishnaiah K Dr., 2004, pp116-117, 2nd Irrigation Day Celebrations, 3rd March 2004, Background note for utilization of Godavari waters, Vision of Dr. K.Sriramakrishnaiah ,BE,FIE on Water resources and Utilisation in Andhra Pradesh.
The Godavari is the biggest river in Andhra Pradesh.  It is also the lowest running river.  Its flood flow is limited to four to five months of south-west monsoon period.  Only nominal flows are available in other months.
Godavari flood flows transport considerable volume of silt.  Any reservoir across Godavari looses considerable capacity very fast.  The Godavari is flanked by dense Dandakaraya forest.   Any reservoir across Godavari involves submersion of valuable forest areas.  Alongwith it the tribals, who live in these forests have to be rehabilitated.  Mineral wealth, specially coal, a valuable energy fuel, may also be lost due to submersion under any reservoir.  The submersion extends to the neighbouring states, and this problem cannot be solved easily.
The main river has two notable works one at the entry into Andhra Pradesh-Sriramsagar, and the other at the head of the delta formation- Sir Arthur Cotton Barrage, near Dowlaiswaram.  In between Inchampalli reservoir and Polavaram project are proposed.   These projects have kindled the hopes and aspirations of the people in the Godavari basin and outside.
The rapid siltation of Sriramsagar, the biggest major irrigation project in the Telangana, is causing worry.
There is a plenty of scope to construct small reservoirs within the command which will improve the storage position.  Due to these reservoirs, the capacity of pumps to be installed gets reduced and the benefit of the post-monsoon crop, which is most desirable, can be had.
- Dr. K.Sriramakrishnaiah, 2004, pp122-126, 2nd Irrigation Day Celebrations, 3rd March 2004, Background note for utilization of Godavari waters, Vision of Dr. K.Sriramakrishnaiah,BE,FIE on Water resources and Utilisation in Andhra Pradesh.

8.6 As a result of this policy, it will be ensured that a more favourable, fair and just legislative regime for STs is put in force which would have the following broad features:
• The principle of least displacement would be mandatorily followed. All the technological/ financial/ displacement alternatives should be explored and reasons given to justify that the proposed project involves least displacement.
There shall be a threshold of displacement viz. the maximum number of persons that can be displaced in one project. Projects involving displacement of more then a fixed number, say 50000, would not be considered, if the majority are STs, or would be subjected to more stringent appraisal norms.
• An exhaustive social impact assessment would be conducted before initiating a development project.
• Displacement would be after mandatory consultation with the community as provided in the PESA Act.
• The laws applicable to the Fifth and Sixth Schedule Areas would not be amended to open up the areas for control or ownership by private non-tribal individuals, industries or institutions.
• The definition of ‘public purpose’ will be reexamined. What is public purpose for one category of population may result in the trauma of displacement for the tribal people.
• Use of tribal land on lease basis rather than on acquisition, will be encouraged, with provision for the land to revert to the original tribal owner on expiry of the lease period or on earlier closure of the project or the enterprise.
• The principle of ‘land for land’ in the command area or zone of influence would be followed scrupulously. This would lessen the inbuilt inequities between the upstream displaced persons and the downstream beneficiaries in case of, say, irrigation projects.
• There will be mandatory consultations with Tribes Advisory Councils in case of displacement of STs from the Scheduled Areas.
• STs displaced from Scheduled Areas shall be allotted alternative lands in Scheduled Areas only.
• Compensation would be computed not merely on the  basis of the replacement value of the individual land rights lost, but on the market value of land, the concept of net present value, loss of opportunity cost, community rights, and livelihoods.
• The cash compensation to be made available will be invested in such ventures as yield regular income.
For instance, supplemented with institutional loan, it may be invested in housing to be built for the project staff or for shops, yielding monthly rent, etc.
· Land and other assets would be provided in the joint names of both spouses or in the name of the woman of the household.
• Unused land will, after a fixed period of time, be physically handed back to the original owner or heirs in a condition fit for agriculture or other use.
• In industrial enterprises set up in the Scheduled Areas(except in small ventures), the community would get suitable benefits, which could be in the form of being made a partner in the said industry or a certain percentage of the profits being utilized for local area development. The displaced would become co-sharers in the fruits of acquisition. Suitable amendments in the Companies Act would be introduced for this purpose.
• The PAFs would have first right to get employment in the project. Training should be organized for the induction of PAFs even before the project is initiated.
• The implementation of R& R would be upfront to make the process of displacement more humane.
• A ground level monitoring mechanism involving representatives of the PAFs, and post implementation social audit will also be ensured
• In application to Scheduled Areas, the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, the National Policy on Resettlement and Rehabilitation of Project Affected Families–2003, the Coal Bearing Areas (Acquisition and Development) Act, 1957 and the National Mineral Policy, 1993 will be amended to harmonize with those of the PESA Act, 1996.


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Born in 1932 at Mudinepalli, near Gudivada, Krishna Dist. Andhra Pradesh, received Bachelors degree in Civil Engg., from Viswesaraiah Engineering College, Banglore (1956) and Masters Degree in Environmental Engineering from Rice university, Houston, Texas, (USA) (1962), Ph.D (Hony). Former Head of the Department of Civil Engineering and principal of College of Engineering, Andhra university.Formerly Hony.Professor in Andhra University,Manonmanian Sundarnar University,JNT University. Fellow of the Institution of Engineers,India Recipient of the University Grants Commissions National Award "Swami Pranavananda Award on Ecology and Environmental Sciences" for the year 1991. Recipient of Sivananda Eminent Citizen Award for 2002 by Sanathana Dharma Charitable Trust, Andhra Pradesh state. Presently Working as Director, centre for Environmental Studies, GITAM University, http://www.geocities.com/prof_shivajirao/resume.html http://www.eoearth.org/contributor/Shivaji.rao