Mission Kakatiya is a scheme to restore silt-filled tanks and ponds meant for agricultural irrigation. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao christened the scheme after Kakatiya kings who ruled Telangana and other adjoining areas six centuries ago as they had paid top priority to tank and canal irrigation. Mission Kakatiya is to desilt all tanks and increase ground water table in rain fed areas of Telangana.
Tanks have been the life line of Telangana owing to the state’s geographical positioning. The people of the state are highly dependent on the tanks which are spread across all the ten districts. The topography and rainfall pattern in Telangana have made tank irrigation an ideal type of irrigation by storing and regulating water flow for agricultural use.
Tank irrigation has huge bearing on generation of rural employment, poverty reduction and agricultural growth. The sheer size of command area under tank irrigation makes it a large center of agricultural production and provides a critical opportunity for commercial agriculture through market linkages.
The objective of “Mission Kakatiya” is to enhance the development of agriculture based income for small and marginal farmers, by accelerating the development of minor irrigation infrastructure, strengthening community based irrigation management and adopting a comprehensive programme for restoration of tanks.
The government has prioritised to take the restoration of minor irrigation tanks to restore them to store their original capacity and to effectively utilise 255 TMC of water allocated for minor irrigation sector under Godavari & Krishna River basins.
The minimum ayacut (the area served by an irrigation project such as a canal, dam or a tank) that can be irrigated with the above allocated water is about 20 lakh acres. But as per the statistics the ayacut now being irrigated is only about nine to ten lakh acres under minor irrigation tanks. Thus, there is a gap ayacut of about 10 lakh acres.
The reasons for this gap ayacut under minor irrigation tanks are due to loss of water storage capacity of tanks due to accumulation of silt in tank beds over a long period, due to dilapidated sluices, weirs and weak bunds, due to defunct of feeder channels, due to dilapidated condition of irrigation canals.
A reconciliation survey was conducted to identify the exact number of all types of Minor irrigation sources in Telangana state. As per survey 46,531 no. of M.I, small tanks, percolation tanks, private kuntas and small tanks (constructed by forest department) were identified for restoration.
The massive programme for Restoration of tanks is named as “Chinna Neeti Vanarula Punaruddarana” and it is renamed as “Mission Kakatiya”.
The government is planned to restore 9,306 tanks every year (20% of total tanks) with an eventual target of restoring all 46,531 tanks in five years, in a phased manner
The present programme of “Mission Kakatiya” is to bring this gap ayauct of ten lakh acres in to command which requires no further allocation of water and also land acquisition.
This gap ayacut of 10 lakh acres under minor irrigation tanks can be brought to irrigation through various means such as: by de-silting the tank beds to restore original water storage capacity of tanks, by repairing dilapidated sluices, weirs etc., by strengthening the tank bunds to its original standards. by repairing the feeder channels to standards for getting water freely into tanks ( part of chain of tanks), by re-sectioning of irrigation channels to standards & Repairs to CM & CD works for smooth distribution of water to fields according to their requirement.
It is programmed to publicise the importance of Chinna Neeti Vanarula Punaruddharana (restoration of minor irrigation sources) in the public through wide publicity to make them aware and participate in the massive programme designed by the government.