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Krishna Water Dispute: AP-TS - Quota Tensions



  Dec 04, 2023

Andhra Pradesh-Telangana Krishna Water Sharing Dispute: A Simplified Explanation



Background

The Krishna river, a major water source in southern India, has been a point of contention between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. This dispute primarily revolves around the sharing of river waters, particularly from the Srisailam reservoir, for various purposes including irrigation, drinking, and power generation.

Key Issues and Developments

1. Geographical Context: The Krishna river flows along the border of both states, with major projects like the Srisailam dam and Nagarjuna Sagar dam being central to the dispute.

2. Recent Controversies:
Andhra Pradesh’s plan to expand the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme, which involves drawing additional water from the Srisailam reservoir, has aggravated tensions. Telangana objected to this, claiming it’s illegal and violates the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014 .
Andhra Pradesh contends that it’s not drawing more than its allocated quota and is only using surplus floodwater .

3. Historical Disputes: The Potireddypadu head regulator, a project on the Krishna river, has been a longstanding issue, predating the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh .

4. Legal and Administrative Framework:
The Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal (KWDT) established under the Inter-State River Water Dispute Act, 1956, is responsible for water allocation. The first KWDT was set up in 1969 and the second in 2004 .

Post the creation of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh requested the inclusion of Telangana as a separate party at the KWDT and a rework of water allocations .
Article 262 of the Indian Constitution and related laws like the Inter-State Water Disputes Act, 1956, provide the legal framework for resolving such disputes .

Current Situation

Telangana claims Andhra’s projects will reduce its share of Krishna water, while Andhra assures adherence to allocated quotas .

The matter has escalated to the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB), and the possibility of the Central Government’s intervention or a Supreme Court decision remains open .

Conclusion

The Krishna river water sharing dispute between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana is a complex issue entangled in historical, geographical, and legal aspects. While both states assert their rights over the river’s resources, a balanced and legally sound resolution is crucial for sustainable water management in the region.


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