HC Clears Stay On Telangana’s Kaleshwaram Project 

Work was in progress on Kaleshwaram lift irrigation project before the National Green Tribunal ordered a stay on October 5, 2017. - Sakshi Post

Hyderabad: The Hyderabad High Court on Wednesday vacated the stay imposed by the National Green Tribunal on Telangana government’s dream project, Kaleshwaram irrigation project. The court permitted the government to continue work on the project while ensuring that the the reserve forest areas are spared. The Court said that work in the forest areas can be taken up after the case is finally decided.

The National Green Tribunal had ordered an interim stay on Telangana government’s Kaleshwaram lift irrigation project on October 5 due to the absence of environmental clearances. The project aims to take water to the drought-hit regions of Telangana.

The NGT restrained the Maharashtra government, as also Irrigation and CAD Department of Telangana from carrying out any construction activities on the ₹80,500 crore project until mandatory statutory clearances including environment and forest clearances are granted.

The Telangana government filed an appeal in the High Court stating that the project is being constructed to serve the larger interests of people and all clearances will be obtained in due course.

The project envisages the construction of a barrage across river Godavari near Medigadda village in the Karimnagar district of Telangana for diversion of 180,000 million cubic feet of water which could irrigate 7,38,851 hectares of land, covering the erstwhile Adilabad, Karimnagar, Nizamabad, Warangal, Medak, Nalgonda and Rangareddy districts of Telangana.

The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by Telangana-based Mohammad Hayathuddin, who alleged that the construction of the scheme had begun without environmental and other statutory clearances.

The plea had sought a ban on non-forest activities such as felling of trees and blasting and tunnelling activities in the forest areas which were in violation of the Forest Conservation Act.

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