Medak, Sept 12 (INN): TPCC president N. Uttam Kumar Reddy on Monday led a delegation of party leaders to express solidarity with the farmers of Vemula Ghat in Medak district who were protesting for over two months against the State Government’s proposed Mallanna Sagar reservoir which would submerge 14 villages in Siddipet mandal.
Addressing a function ‘Sanghibhavam Yatra’ (Solidarity Meet) organized by the Congress party, Uttam Kumar Reddy lashed out at the TRS Government saying that it was taking unilateral decision on Mallanna Sagar project despite severe opposition by the land owners and the farmers of the area. He questioned Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao’s assertion that the reservoir would provide irrigation to the three districts saying that KCR was snatching lands that raised two to three crops to build a reservoir that would irrigate one crop.
The TPCC chief said that the previous Congress Government had started the Pranahita-Chevella works to irrigate 16.40 lakh acres of land with an estimated cost of Rs. 38,000 crore. However, the government has increased the project cost to Rs. 83,000 Crore without any significant increase in the ayacut. He said this would put a huge burden on the State’s exchequer.
Uttam Kumar Reddy also accused KCR of mortgaging Telangana’s interests with Maharashtra by entering into irrigation pact with their government to reduce the height of Tummadihatti barrage from to 152 meters to 148 metres. He also questioned the enforcement of Section 144 in Vemulaghat saying that if this was the democracy KCR was taking about by stifling the voices of those opposing the government’s decision.
The TPCC chief said that the Congress would fight for the rights of the farmers and demanded the State Government compensate the farmers according the provisions of Land Acquisition Act, 2013.
Leader of Opposition in Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir, Former Deputy CM Damodar Rajanarsimha, MLAs T. Jeevan Reddy, DK Aruna and other senior leaders were also present.
Earlier, a delegation of Congress leaders led by Uttam Kumar met Governor ESL Narsimhan and urged him to intervene in the matter. The delegation urged the Governor to direct the state government to ensure that the Mallannasagar oustees are compensated according to Land Acquisition Act 2013. (INN)