White Paper on Polavaram: Babu Blames Jagan for Project Setback

NDA govt of Andhra Pradesh led by CM Naidu has released a white paper on the Polavaram Irrigation project, asserting the project had been significantly undermined over the last five years (2019-24).
White Paper on Polavaram: Babu Blames Jagan for Project Setback

National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government of Andhra Pradesh led by Chief Minister Nara Chandrababu Naidu has released a white paper on the Polavaram Irrigation project, asserting the project had been significantly undermined over the last five years (2019-24). The development comes days after Chief Minister visited the Polavaram site on June 17 and inspected the project works. According to Chandrababu Naidu, Rs 12157 crores will most likely be the cost of completion of balance wors of Phase 1 of the project.

Chief Minister accused the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy-led YSRCP government of damaging the Polavaram project and highlighted that during the TDP administration in 2014-2019; the project progressed smoothly, overcoming numerous challenges. He also highlighted that international experts from the United States will be reviewing the project in the first week of July.

Chandrababu Naidu recalled that the TDP government achieved a Guinness World Record by completing 32,215 cubic meters of concrete work in the spill channel in a single day. Chief Minister detailed the TDP government’s accomplishments, including the completion of upper and lower coffer dams and head works. He emphasized that the diaphragm wall, a critical component of the project, was completed in a record time of 414 days.

CM noted that a diaphragm wall extending two kilometers and over 100 meters deep was constructed by the German company ‘Baur’. He mentioned that the spillway gate designs were prepared, and gate installation had commenced during the TDP tenure. Naidu pointed out that all project-related works received approval from the Polavaram Project Authority (PPA) and the Central Water Resources Department, with former ministers Uma Bharati and Nitin Gadkari expressing satisfaction with the progress.

According to Chandrababu Naidu, 72 percent of the Polavaram project was completed under the TDP regime, with Rs 11,537 crore spent on the works. He criticized the YSRCP government’s handling of the Polavaram project over the past five years, accusing it of making poor decisions and engaging in reverse tendering dramas. He claimed that the day Jagan Mohan Reddy was sworn in as chief minister in 2019, orders were issued to halt the Polavaram works.

Candrababu Naidu highlighted that notices were served on July 29, 2019, for the construction company to vacate the site, following the Peter Committee report on July 24, 2019. He explained that the central government concluded no corruption occurred in Polavaram, as stated in Parliament on December 2, 2019. He asserted that changing the contractor further delayed the project and criticized the reverse tendering process as being against the rules. Further, he accused the Jagan government of damaging the Polavaram project, expressing regret that despite claims of saving Rs 738 crore through reverse tenders, the diaphragm wall was ultimately damaged.

White Paper is a Bundle of Lies: YSRCP

Former minister Ambati Rambabu has said the white paper on Polavaram released by Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu carried a bunch of lies and false allegations. “Naidu, in order to cover his own mistakes in his previous term, is now shifting the blame on Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy’s government. The Polavaram project was destroyed due to the mishandling by Naidu during the 2014-19 period. All the strategic mis-steps in the project were taken by the TD government,” the YSRC leader claimed.

He pointed out that Chandrababu intentionally took over the project, which should have been implemented by the central government in a normal course. “Naidu made a mistake by taking over the project in 2016 with the rates of 2013-14. It was Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy as CM who gave life to Polavaram by getting all the permissions from the Centre.” Rambabu said there was no truth in the white paper released by Chandrababu Naidu now.

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