[River Disputes] Polavaram Project Ordinance: Purpose, Benefits, Criticism Andhra Pradesh vs Telangana

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  1. Polavaram Project: Objectives
  2. Polavaram Project Authority (PPA)
  3. Polavaram Ordinance
  4. Anti-ordinance arguments

Polavaram Project: Objectives

Official name: Indira Sagar Multipurpose project
What are the objectives of this project?

  1. To interlink Godavari (Polavaram) & Krishna (Vijaywada) just before they merge into sea. (observe map)
  2. To Store water at Polavaram dam in West Godavari district.
  3. To Irrigate ~3 lakh hectre agricultural land.
  4. To generate 950+ MW hydro-electricity
  5. To Supply Water to Visakhapatanam & Vizag steel plant.

Map Polavaram Project Andhrapradesh

Timeline of Polavaram Project

  • 1941: idea came.
  • 2004: Andhra CM YSR Reddy revives the demand for Polavaram Project
  • 2009: Andhra government requests the Union government to start this project.
  • Union declares it a national project & puts it under Ministry of Water resource.
  • Odisha & Chhatisgarh don’t like this. NOT ONE BIT. They got Supreme Court.
Party Why objection to Polavaram DAM?
  • Height of this dam should be low.
  • else, our Malkangiri forest area will be submerged in water.  (~650 ht.)
  • How? Because Godavari is fed from Sabari and Sileru rivers in Odisha.
CHHATTISGARH Dam will submerge villages along Sabari river. (~800 ht.)
TELANGANA Dam will submerge villages of Khammam district.Polvaram project won’t give any water to us.
EIA Environmental impact assessment (EIA) says >250 villages and >1.5 lakh villagers will be affected.

Case pending in SC, Taarikh pe taarikh. ok then why in news?

Polavaram Project Authority (PPA)

  1. May 1, 2014, Cabinet cleared proposal to setup Polavaram Project Authority (PPA) – for solving objection by other states and arranging investment for this project.
    1. CEO (IAS), Government of India will appoint
    2. Chief Secretary of Andhra & Telangana will be nominated members. [Later Andhra CM requested Modi to remove Telangana chief Secretary from this body, because entire project area now falls under Andhra only.]
    3. +Chief engineers from water, power Department
  2. Union is empowered to create such bodies under Interstate River Water Disputes Act, 1956. But it is not a “Statutory body” until parliament approves.

Polavaram Ordinance: Salient Features

  • May 29, 2014: President promulgated an ordinance, to amend the Andhra Pradesh reorganization act.
  • This alters boundaries between Andhra & Telangana. thus transfers ~250 villages from Khammam district of Telangana to Andhra Pradesh
  • To help building Polavaram project. (these villages will get submerged)
  • Telangana is opposed to this ordinance.
  • Andhra state assembly passed a resolution, asking Union to create a new law on Polavaram project. (To replace that ordinance).

Arguments against Ordinance

  1. As per Supreme Court’s interpretation of Art.123, ordinance can be issued only in extraordinary situation. Polavaram is not extraordinary, government could put this matter in parliament after a week. (When President was making joint address to both houses).
  2. President cannot promulgate ordinance to amend Constitution. Only parliament can do so. On the same logic, Article 3 says “parliament, by law, can form a new state or alter boundries.” Hence this matter was outside President’s ordinance power.
  3. Even for the sake of arguments, let’s believe President has ordinance powers to change boundary. But even then he did not obtain the opinion of state legislative assemblies before doing signing this ordinance.
  4. This sets a wrong precedence, next time ruling government may alter bounders in the states were it sits in opposition, citing Polavaram case study.

Pro-ordinance arguments

  1. This is not a Constitutional amendment.
  2. Every-time fresh reference is not necessary to seek opinion of the concerned state legislative assemblies.

Mock Questions

Q. Which of the following state governments are officially opposed to Polavaram Project?

  1. Telangana
  2. Odisha
  3. Tamilnadu
  4. Maharahstra
  5. Chhatisgarh
  6. Jharkhand

Correct choices

  1. only 1, 2 and 5
  2. only 1,3 and 4
  3. only 1, 4 and 5
  4. all of them

Q. Correct statements about Polavaram Project

  1. official name is Rajiv Sagar project
  2. Will build a dam in Khammam district, in Telengana.
  3. This dam will interlink Godavari, Krishna and the Pennar river.
  4. None of above

Q. In May 2014, President of India promulgated an ordinance related to Polavaram project. What was its purpose?

  1. Specifying the water and electricity sharing formula among the stakeholder states
  2. for Constitution of Polavaram Project Authority.
  3. Transferring villages from Andhra to Telangana.
  4. Transferring villages from Telangana to Andhra.
  • (Descriptive Question) List the Constitutional provisions of ordinance powers of the president. Narrate recent cases where it has been used. (200 words)

interview Questions:

  1. What is Polvaram project? Why is it in controversy? should  it be scrapped off?
  2. What is Polavaram ordinance? Why are critiques arguing that President’s ordinance power has been misused in this case?

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110 Comments on “[River Disputes] Polavaram Project Ordinance: Purpose, Benefits, Criticism Andhra Pradesh vs Telangana”

  1. sir,ur articles is osam. i really love it,thankuuu sooooooooo much

  2. Mrunal sir. you said…IR after prelims(i.e.24th August). So I want to know whether you will cover IR from 2nd week of may or you would just start from last week of August.
    My optional is political science and international relation….that’s why …more concerned….

  3. Sir,
    Only one mistake in question no-5 (ans should b ‘A’)
    I think it’s type error..
    Thanks for thisss good article

  4. WRT Article 3,any law passed by the parliament shall not be deemed to an amendment to the constitution.
    it is jus an act passed by the parliament by a mere simple majority.
    so,president through ordinance can make changes in the AP reorganization act ..

  5. i fiiled Maithili language rather than Marathi.What should I do to change it a Marathi.Please help

  6. Hey, mrunal if m not wrong thn I heard tht u r appearing for ths years prelims. Right

  7. What is the difference between Crocodile and Gharial?
    • Gharial ranges only around India and neighbouring countries of the mainland, whereas crocodiles are widespread including Australia.
    • Gharials are bigger than freshwater crocodiles and smaller than saltwater crocodiles.
    • Gharials inhabit deep freshwater habitats, while there are both freshwater and saltwater crocodile species.
    • Gharials have a long and slender snout, whereas crocodiles have a broad and strong snout.
    • Male gharials have a bulbous growth on the tip of snout but not in females. However, male crocodiles are larger than the females and they do not have bulbous growths on the snout.
    • Some crocodiles are man killers but gharials are not.
    • Crocodiles have powerful muscles in jaws to give a strong bite on the prey, while gharials do not bite hard as their jaws are thin and fragile.
    • Crocodiles can open their jaws fully prey on large animals, whereas gharials cannot open their jaws fully and feed on small preys.
    • Crocodiles can walk on the ground by their limbs, while gharials move on ground by belly-sliding.
    • Gharials are the fastest in water than any other crocodilian member.

  8. Mrunal sir apke comment bahot achchhe lagte hain,….. Sir please upload some material about “stem cell”

  9. Mrunal Sir plz post current events upto june before 13th July ..plz..cause we hav Capf exam…and I live in such place in maharashtra..where ther is no source other than u…
    And sir one more query..should we refer last yrs economic survey?? Cause new survey wil come just 3-4 days befor exam..

  10. mrunal sir if u dont mine please correct mistake in 5thanswer in may current affairs about polavaram its A not B .you given correct explanation but some people feel little bit ambiguity. so for that reason i am suggesting to correct mistake other wise even its not a mistake.

  11. Thank u v.much such a knowledge service providing us wt nice diagrams really helpful to us who inturn serve d nation in d form of IASetc

  12. Mrunal sir explaining current affairs in the manner of question and answers within 200-250 words limit is very good approach…im remembering them quite easily and if revise 2-3 times, can reproduce in exam hall…im also taking its printout after compiling them in a word file for every month because it is easy to revise…plz dont stop this initiative…im really indebted you….thank you so much sir

  13. “Gahirmatha” (a part of bhitarkanika wildlife sanctuary) in Orissa’s Kendrapara district, a place renowned as a breeding center for the Olive Ridley

  14. Any please clear this….
    How restatement, obversion, conversion, inference type of assumptions are INVALID assumptions? These are correct/right based on the given premise but it taken as invalid.

  15. Difference between Crocodile and Gharial?

    CROCODILE (also found in freshwater), FALSE GHARIAL = SALTWATER (Estuaries, Mangroves- Saltwater Swamps)
    ALIGATOR, GHARIAL = FRESHWATER (Riverine Habitats)


    Gharial ranges only around India and neighbouring countries

    gharial is one of three crocodilians native to India, the other two being the mugger crocodile and the saltwater crocodile

    Gharials are bigger than freshwater crocodiles

    Male gharials have a bulbous growth on the tip of snout but not in females

    crocodiles are widespread including Australia.

    Some crocodiles are man killers but gharials are not.

    Crocodiles can open their jaws fully prey on large animals, whereas gharials cannot open their jaws fully and feed on small preys (fishes etc)

    Crocodiles can walk on the ground by their limbs, while gharials move on ground by belly-sliding

    Gharials are the fastest in water than any other crocodilian member.

  16. actually olive ridly turtle is famous in orissa ..pardeep islands but the article showing tamilnadu

  17. Hi mrunal sir plz clear my doubt. Sir maine iAS ka form fill kr diya hai but mere pas koi notification ya mail nhi aya hai. Kya mujhe fir se form bhrna pdega? Plz help me

  18. The term “crocodilians” refers to
    1]Family Crocodylidae (“true” crocodiles),
    2]Family Alligatoridae (alligators and caimans) and
    3]Family Gavialidae (gharial).

    The term “crocodiles” refers only to the “true” crocodiles.

    =>The main criteria used to distinguish members of the three crocodilian Families are associated with the head, particularly the jaws and skull.
    =>The skull and jaws of all crocodilians function identically, and are composed of the same suite of bones. But there is variation in the extent to which different bones compose certain structures.
    =>There are some external characteristics of the head that allow members of the three Families to be distinguished.

    => They tend to have broad snouts, which are often referred to as being “shovel-shaped”.
    => The upper jaw is so broad that when the jaws are closed many of the teeth of the lower jaw fit into sockets along the edge of the expanded upper jaw.
    => In all crocodilians the 4th tooth back from the front, on the lower jaw, is greatly enlarged. In the alligators and caimans, this tooth fits into a socket in the upper jaw when the jaws are closed, such that its tip is hidden.


    => The upper jaw of “true” crocodiles is not as broad as that of alligators and caimans.
    => It is sharply constricted or notched on the snout.
    => In contrast to alligators and caimans, when “true” crocodiles close their jaws the enlarged 4th tooth on the lower jaw rests in that notch, and its tip is clearly visible. This is a major distinction between “true” crocodiles and alligators and caimans.


    => They have a greatly elongated snout.
    => This elongation has been achieved more by compacting the cranial part of the skull, at the rear, than by elongation of the whole head.
    => Thus, the head length of a 3 m long Gharial is not very different from the head length of a Crocodile of the same total length – Gharials simply have a far greater proportion of the head allocated to snout.

  19. sir pls provide some material on biology..its quite boaring to read frm textbbook…

  20. Mrunal sir…………..plz S&T….pehle de dijye….baad me pressure badh jayega…!!

  21. mrunal sir ,plz clear my doubt.my problem is different dob. in my birth cert dob is :5/2/1994
    but in my school record dob is 5/1/1993.in my matriculation ssc cert(GSEB) dob/: 5/1/1993
    but after 10th i get admission in 11th sci,but i did diploma in mech eng & then B.E. mech is running(7 sem)
    so my last leaving certificate is from 11th school.but for passport purpose i need same dob in birth cert & last L.C. so i do court process for change in my L.C. after court order 11th school issue me new L.C. as per birth cert. now in my birth cert & 11th L.C. dob is 5/2/1994. dut in 10th cert still it is 5/1/1993. when i appear for ias next year which dob i fill online form. is L.C is valid as per certi valid under the expression Matriculation/Secondary
    Examination Certificate of upsc notification on page no 2 (2014). will it create any problem for me at verification stage? my birth cert & 11th L.C is same,should i go with them or 10th credit certi. i also have copy of court process. plz guide me on it. which documents is required at main stage?

  22. Anyone having “MAITHILI” Literature as an optional subject then please let me know.

  23. sir whn vl u update sci and tech ….waiting for it!

  24. Thank u sir

  25. Hi Mrunal..
    writing competition was a great initiative
    why did u stop it ? if no personal reason is involved please let it happen.. as it immensly help to all de aspirants..

  26. 5. A
    I think there is a typo

  27. friends i have my sbi po exam on 6th july , does anyone has any idea whether i can write the (english) descriptive portion with black/blue pen? reply expected .thanks.

    1. No restriction…. can use either black or blue (other colors red, green etc. not forbidden as per rules, but shouldn’t be used as they are unconventional)

      1. use black or blue

      2. Thanks a lot Ujjwal.. :)

  28. here, official name is incorrect . it should be written scientific name or zoological name.

  29. Anyone living in varanasi and preparing? (*seriously)..kindly let me know and let us get in touch

  30. ghariyal related to only chambal river and crocodile get in narmada and ganga river . ghariyal get only in india but crocodile get in outside india also . ghariyal as per name its front mouth like as ghada means pitcher and whole mouth like pipe, and crocodile’s mouth is flate

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