“Generally, tanks and lakes get full water in August and September. But, 30 per cent of the lakes have already been filled to the brim. These inflows will ensure drinking water to thousands of villages in the catchment areas apart from meeting the water requirements for kharif and next rabi seasons also,” a chief engineer of irrigation department said.
Minor irrigation wing officials said this was possible following huge inflows into the tanks and lakes due to rains and discharges from major and medium irrigation projects. Of the total 43,863 tanks and lakes, water level in 30 per cent of them is to the brim. Officials said the rest of the tanks and lakes are also likely to get filled if the heavy downpour continues in the state.
“Of the total irrigation tanks, 4,698 tanks are overflowing and another 7,574 tanks are filled between 75% and 100% of their capacity. About 8,400 tanks have been flowing up to 75% of their full tank level. Among the districts, 677 tanks in Kothagudem and 453 tanks in Adilabad are overflowing,” an irrigation official said.
Officials said a majority of the tanks were filled mainly due to heavy rains in Nizamabad, Kamareddy, Warangal, Kothagudem, Nagarkurnool and Nalgonda districts. In Mahbubnagar, Mulugu, Gajwel and Mancherial districts, the tanks reached their full capacity due to water releases from major and minor irrigation and lift irrigation projects and also rains.
In Mulugu district, 202 tanks received huge inflows from Sriramsagar stage I project and Juvvadi Chokkarao Project. Similarly, many lakes received copious inflows after the lifts were opened and water released to the catchment areas and downstream.
The government also lifted crestgates of major projects such as Sriramsagar and Lower Manair Dam.“Mission Kakatiya has helped in strengthening of the bunds, increase in water retention and storage capacity. Desilting and repairs to inlets and outlets also helped,” a superintending engineer of irrigation department said.