In another gesture aimed at promoting friendly relations between the two Telugu states, Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao on Wednesday decided to invite his Andhra Pradesh counterpart Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy as the chief guest for the inauguration of the Kaleshwaram lift irrigation project on June 21.
KCR, as Rao is popularly known, will visit Vijayawada shortly to invite Jagan Reddy to the event, according to the Chief Minister's Office (CMO).
Built on Godavari river, the project is expected to change the face of Telangana.
The foundation stone for the project was laid in 2016 and the YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) chief Jagan Reddy as the then leader of opposition in Andhra Pradesh had opposed it and accused Telangana of diverting Godavari waters. He had also accused then Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu of failure to protect the state's interests.
However, after Jagan Reddy led YSRCP to power in Andhra Pradesh, the two Chief Ministers took the initiative to forge friendly relations. KCR had visited Vijayawada to attend Jagan Reddy's swearing-in on May 30 and underlined the need for both the states to work together for the mutual benefit of the people.
KCR had said on Telangana Formation Day on June 2 that Kaleshwaram will create history as the largest lift irrigation project built in the fastest mode. "Constructing such a large project in such a short period of two-and-a-half years is proof to government's efficiency and technological excellence," he had said.
The government is making preparations to lift 2 tmc (thousand million cubic feet) of Godavari water per day from the Medigadda barrage beginning July end.
The project would supply sufficient irrigated water to grow two crops a year in 45 lakh acres of land in 16 districts.
KCR announced that the irrigation department was prepared to demonstrate the engineering excellence of lifting water from 90 metre above sea-level to 618 metre.
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