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CM to set operation of PRLIS in motion by switching on first pump today

September 16, 2023 12:14 am | Updated 12:14 am IST – NARLAPUR (NAGARKURNOOL DIST.)

The Palamuru-Rangareddy Lift Irrigation Scheme has several unique features such as largest pumps and surge-pool.

The Palamuru-Rangareddy Lift Irrigation Scheme has several unique features such as largest pumps and surge-pool.
| Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

In a major step towards quenching the thirst of 12.3 lakh acres of drought-prone and parched uplands, those uncovered under existing projects, in the erstwhile Mahabubnagar and Rangareddy districts, the first pump in Yellur-Narlapur pump-house of Palamuru-Rangareddy Lift Irrigation Scheme (PRLIS) is set to be switched on by Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Saturday.

It’s the first milestone in the execution of the project that sets in motion the process of making the 31 pumps operational in a phased manner. Project engineers, who have been racing against time along with the contract agencies to take the project into operational mode, say it has several unique features.

During a visit to the project sites on Friday, they explained that the first four stages of lifts which comprise 31 pumps and an additional three spare pumps of 145 megawatt each are the largest capacity pumps to be used in a lift irrigation project anywhere in the world. In the first stage, each pump would have the capacity to lift 3,000 cusecs water for a height of 104 metres to carry the Srisailam backwaters into Narlapur reservoir.

“The 139 MW capacity pumps used in the first-stage lifting of Kaleshwaram lift irrigtion project were of the largest capacity to be used so far. We called them Bahubali pumps to refer to their capacity but now we are using Maha Bahubali pumps in Palamuru-Rangareddy project,” a superintending engineer of PRLIS, A.Satyanarayana Reddy, said.

Commissioning of the first pump in the first-stage lifting of PRLIS is a symbolic beginning of the operationalisation of the projects. The authorities stated that the head works of the projects including pump-houses, reservoirs, tunnels and open canals which are necessary even for drawing drinking water are 80% complete by 80% while works on erection of pumps are going on at a brisk pace.

Explaining another unique feature of PRLIS, another superintending engineer K.Srinivas stated that the surge-pool in the second-stage lifting at Yedula would be Asia’s largest such facility as part of lifting water. The pump-house has 90-metre (295 ft) deep surge-pool and water is filled till 79.25 metres (260 ft), and it would allow all the nine pumps with 145 MW capacity to draw and lift water to 124 metres height putting out 2,650 cusecs each.

“The pump-houses of PRLIS have another distinct feature compared to those constructed in Kaleshwaram project. With the experiences of Kaleshwaram, the pump-houses of PRLIS are constructed in a very spacious manner,” Mr. Srinivas said, adding that they have plans to carry water till Karivena reservoir by October-end.

But for the hurdles in the forms of court cases and green tribunal cases, which ultimately delayed the environmental clearance, the project could have made much progress already. Work on the canal systems to carry water to tanks and farm fields would commence after the head works, the project engineers stated.

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