HYDERABAD: In a significant development, the Telangana High Court on Tuesday refused to intervene on a petition that is pending in the Supreme Court and the National Green Tribunal (NGT) over the Rayalaseema Lift Irrigation Scheme in Andhra Pradesh. The high court began hearing on petitions filed in this regard by Congress leader Vamsichand Reddy and social activist Srinivas.
Telangana additional advocate general Ramachandra Rao presenting the government’s argument said that the Telangana high court has the jurisdiction to hear this matter pertaining to the project in Andhra Pradesh. He said that the issue of river water allocations is under the consideration of the Supreme Court. Andhra Pradesh has been carrying out project works without obtaining permissions for it, he claimed.
Reacting to this, the Telangana high court wondered how it can question the Andhra Pradesh government on this matter. The counsel for the petitioner said that the NGT has granted permission to Andhra Pradesh to submit detailed project report (DPR) and invite tenders for the project works. To this point, the Telangana High Court asked the petitioner’s counsel as to why the Supreme Court was not approached if they had any objections over the NGT directions.
“The Telangana government is of the opinion that NGT does not have the jurisdiction in this matter. The NGT needs to settle the issue on whether it has the jurisdiction to hear the case or not,” the high court remarked.
Andhra Pradesh Advocate General Sriram told the high court that all the points mentioned in the petition are pending before the Supreme Court, stating that the hearing on the current petitions should be adjourned till the time the Supreme Court completes its hearing. In response to this, the Telangana High Court announced that the petitions before it are indefinitely adjourned until the completion of the hearing in the apex court. It suggested to the petitioners to bring the matter to its notice once the issue is settled in the Supreme Court.