Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Monday held a key meeting to discuss the various possible ways in which drinking water and irrigation needs of the drought-prone Udayagiri area in Nellore district in Andhra Pradesh can be met.
The Vice President discussed the matter with Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog, Parameswaran Iyer, Secretary, Drinking Water & Sanitation, and U.P. Singh, Secretary, Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation. He also shared with them the concerns of the people of the area.
The Vice President revealed that he had spoken to some people of Udayagiri constituency, from where he was first elected as an MLA in 1978. The residents of the constituency expressed concern over the depleted ground water levels in the region. He locals, the Vice President said, were worried about dried up tanks/borewells and said that the water supply schemes were not serving their needs to the fullest. The locals also informed the Vice President that this was the 7th consecutive year of inadequate rains. Most of them requested the Vice President to explore ways of getting water from Krishna basin or Somasila project.
In the meeting with the Ministry and NITI Aayog officials, it was agreed that they would explore various options in consultation with the Government of Andhra Pradesh and see what might be the most feasible option to provide more water to the region.
The Vice President advised Secretary, Water Resources to discuss with Central Water Commission and explore the technical feasibility. He also suggested that the Detailed Project Report (DPR) and the various ongoing efforts of the state government to mitigate the water crisis could be studied. This included the Water Grid project.
The Vice President also advised that a delegation of senior officials from the Ministry of Jal Shakti, NITI Aayog and Central Water Commission could visit the area after a preliminary assessment is made.
The officials could interact with the concerned stakeholders to understand the ground reality and suggest a way forward, the Vice President said.