Polavaram panel meets ahead of Gadkari's visit

VIJAYAWADA: The three-member committee on Polavaram project headed by Engineer in Chief (Irrigation) M Venkateswarlu, which met in Vijayawada on Sunday, discussed the issues related to expenditure incurred on the project so far along with observations of the technical team from the National Hydro Power Corporation (NHPC), which visited the project site a couple of days ago.

A detailed report is likely to be prepared by the time Union Minister for Water Resources Nitin Gadkari’s visits the State on December 22.

According to sources, the meeting which lasted for about three hours discussed as to how to show the expenditure incurred on various components of the projects so far. The meeting also discussed the observations made by the NHPC team with regard to the construction of upper cofferdam.

They also discussed the tenders to be called for the spillway works, which were removed from the previous contract. The tenders are likely to be called in the EPC mode. The difference in the price quoted by the contractors and present market price of the construction material and equipment were also discussed. The other issues discussed include construction of the chilling plant and related issues.

It is learned that the NHPC committee will submit its report to Central Water Commission in three days. Though the three-member committee comprising Engineer-in-Chief M Venkateswarlu, Polavaram Project Advisor Dinesh Bhargava and  RK Gupta, a member of Polavaram Authority, had first decided to hold the meeting in Rajamahendravaram, but they decided to hold it in Vijayawada.

There was a delay in NHPC visit to the project site by nearly one month from the scheduled date, which is resulting in the delay in the getting the green signal from the Polavaram Project design committee with regard to the upper cofferdam.

Kellar Construction Company is waiting for the approval from the design committee to start the work. The  AP irrigation department officials said that Keller officials have assured them that they would finish the works in three months. Now, they are waiting for the approval of design committee.

CM to visit site today

Meanwhile, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu will be visiting Polavaram Project site on Monday. It will be his first visit to the project site after receiving a letter from the Union Ministry of Water Resources to stop spillway works.

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