Reservoirs in the State are three-fourths empty. Over 700 tmcft is required to fill them.
Andhra Pradesh, being a lower riparian State, is entirely at the mercy of upstream States such as Karnataka and, now, Telangana.
With less than a month for the agricultural season to begin, the farmers in the State are mulling over which crop to go, depending on the various forecasts.
Buoyed by the “tremendous success” of the Pattiseema Lift Irrigation Scheme, Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu has promised to release water to the farmers in both the Krishna and Godavari deltas on June 1, the day the kharif season begins in the State.
The reservoirs on the Krishna, the Godavari, and the Penna, and other smaller reservoirs in the State have a cumulative capacity to 961.58 tmcft. But they currently have only 241.31 tmcft, which works out to 25.10% of their total capacity.
As much as 720.26 tmcft is required to fill the reservoirs, according to the Andhra Pradesh Water Resources Information and Management System.
The four major and eight medium reservoirs on the Krishna have the capacity to hold 600.86 tmcft, but they now have only 173.77 tmcft (28.93% of full capacity). As much as 427.09 tmcft is required to fill them. The four major reservoirs on the Krishna are the Nagarjuna Sagar, Srisailam, Pulichintala, and Prakasam Barrage.
The eight major and 12 medium reservoirs on the Pennar, which have a capacity to hold 245.77 tmcft, currently have only 36.20 tmcft (14.73%). They require 209.53 tmcft to fill them.
The Godavari, which discharges 3,000 tmcft on an average into the Bay of Bengal every ear, has 10 medium reservoirs with a capacity to hold just 12.56 tmcft. They currently have only 4.69 tmcft (37.39%) and need 7.86 tmcft to fill them.
The government pins its hopes on the Godavari, which invariable goes into spate and brings a flood discharge of over 20 lakh cusecs in the first week of June.
Minister for Water Resources Devineni Umamaheswara Rao told The Hindu that water would be released to the Krishna delta as soon as the Godavari goes into spate.
He has not specified whether this is going to be on June 1 or not.
Irrigation engineers do, however, hope to release water from the Pulichintala Project on June 1 and continue it till the Godavari flood water is diverted to the Krishna delta.
As on date, there is only 1.54 tmcft of water in the project. As per their estimate, Pattiseema pumps can be started by June 10.