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Nira-Devdhar: Water released to drought-affected areas

Release of water from the canal will help the parched Madha constituency

pune Updated: Jun 13, 2019 16:34 IST
Shrinivas Deshpande
Shrinivas Deshpande
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,Water released,drought-affected areas
Newly-elected member of Parliament (MP) of Madha constituency Ranjitsinh Naik Nimbalkar (centre) on Monday conducted a meeting with officials from the irrigation department.(HT/PHOTO)

With Madha and adjoining parts of Solapur and Satara district experiencing severe water crisis, the state irrigation department on Wednesday issued an order to release water from the right canal of Nira-Devdhar which may adversely affect supply to Baramati from the left canal.

On Monday, the state irrigation department had submitted a report to the state government on how water of the Nira-Devdhar project should be supplied to drought-affected Madha and Phaltan region.

At the same time report suggested to cut the illegal water supply to Baramati from the left canal.

The report was submitted after state water resources minister Girish Mahajan recently said that the additional water supply to Baramati will be cut.

Reacting on the order Mahajan said, “There is no politics in the order. It was issued following the demand from local member of Parliament (MP). There is a provision of water supply to Khandala and Malashiras region in the Nira-Devdhar project.”

After the meeting, Nimbalkar said,“We are not diverting the water of Baramati. It is in fact our water and since the last 12 years it was illegally provided to Baramati.”

After the government order, Nimbalkar said,“With immediate effect, the irrigation department released 650 cusecs of water from the right canal on Wednesday. We are not diverting the water to Baramati.”

Earlier, on May 30, MP Ranjitsinh Naik-Nimbalkar had conducted a review meeting with officers from the irrigation department on the Nira-Devdhar project.

Baramati Lok Sabha MP Supriya Sule also held a separate meeting with officials from irrigation department on Monday.

When asked about the Nira-Devdhar project, Sule said,“I discussed the issue of water from the Khadakwasla dam, and not about the Nira-Devdhar project. But according to me, one should not indulge in politics on issues related to water as the entire state is witnessing severe drought.”

Nira-Devdhar project has a total of 11.74 MLD (millions of litre per day) of available water stock, out of which at least 7 TMC, which means 60 per cent of water is supplied to Baramati illegally, alleges Nimbalkar. According to Nimbalkar, only 40 per cent (4 TMC) of water goes to drought-affected areas of Bhor, Khandala, Phaltan and Malshiras.

Nimbalkar has also demanded ₹800 crore in funds for the construction of new canals to the Nira-Devdhar project.This will help build an irrigation network in Madha constituency, said Nimbalkar. As of now, there is only 60km of canals in the region.

First Published: Jun 13, 2019 16:33 IST