This kind of lift pumping scheme has no parallel in the entire country. Generally, lift irrigation projects are envisaged to lift and pump water to irrigate the ayacut that is located on higher elevation. However, the one being mentioned here is a completely different one and unique. The scheme is meant to divert flood water to river or canal to avert inundation of thousands of acres of fertile lands due to flash floods. This is all about Kondaveeti Vagu Lift Pumping Scheme; launched to mitigate the threat of floods submerging Amaravati, the upcoming capital city of Andhra Pradesh. Nowhere such a scheme exists in the country.
The Kondaveeti Vagu, known popularly as 'Stream of Sorrow', is soon to turn into a boon for Amaravati and save the capital region from inundation through a unique water-lift pumping scheme. Megha Engineering & Infrastructures Ltd., (MEIL) has executed the works of challenging scheme and made it ready for commissioning. The scheme so designed to lift 5250 cusecs (0.5 tmc) of water from the stream during floods and pump it into the river and adjoining canal with the help of 16 heavy duty motors and pumps.
For years, Kondaveeti Vagu, a stream from the Kondaveedu Hill Range, has created havoc submerging standing crops in the Tadikonda and Mangalagiri mandals upstream the Prakasam barrage. But now with the construction of a pumping scheme for lifting its flood waters into the Prakasam barrage near the Undavalli regulator ensures to divert the flood water into the Krishna Western Main Canal, known as Buckingham Canal. MEIL has taken up execution of this project with Rs. 222.44 crore and made it ready for launching.
One of the major challenges MEIL has faced during execution of this scheme is with live water springs beneath soil at projects site says MEIL's project Manager Mr Amba Jagan. Speaking about the ordeal, he further explains that the project site is surrounded by water on three sides by Krishna River, Buckingham Canal and Kondaveeti Vaagu. With the presence of huge quantity of water on three sides throughout the year it has been a daunting task for excavation he said. During rains, the presence of huge quantity of water at Prakasam barrage and full flow of water in Buckingham Canal only made things worse for the ongoing works due to charging of springs beneath the ground at project site.
However, according to Mr Jagan, MEIL with its outstanding engineering expertise has successfully overcome the challenge by deploying 25 heavy duty motors and generators water from the ground was continuously pumped out to facilitate the ongoing project works.
Due to recent rains hundreds of acres in the Capital region were submerged. This kind of situation can be averted once the Kondaveeti Vaagu Lift Pumping Scheme become operational. Under this scheme MEIL has erected a pump house, discharge point, regulator, a sub-station and power transmission lines. The pump house is ready with 16 pumps and motors. Each motor can lift 350 cusecs of water. Among the 16 pumps one is kept as a standby. It will be used if any motor fails to work. Each pump has 300 RPM capacity and each motor has 993 RPM capacity. A pump consumes about 1.6 KW of power.
The discharge point was built at a height of 23 feet so as not to cause any trouble in the event of heavy floods to Krishna River. Pipelines in 16 rows have been laid for a distance of 1.4 Km between discharge point and pump house. To lay these pipe lines a part of the bund on Krishna River was removed to prevent water entering from agriculture fields. The entire pipe line laying work was completed on war footing and the bund was replaced to restore traffic movement to CM's official residence and Interim Government Complex at Velgapudi. The open space between river bund, discharge point and pump house has been beautified with greenery. Special arrangements have been made for the visitors to enjoy the beauty of Krishna River at discharge point.
For smooth running of the lift pumping scheme necessary infrastructure like power lines, sub-station construction works have been completed. A 132/11 KV capacity sub-station was built. 22 hi-tension towers were built to integrate the sub-station with Tadepalli feeder. Special permission has to be obtained from Indian Railways to erect this HT line. Two generators with 1250 KV capacity of each have been installed in case of interruption in power supply.
To prevent water reverse flow of water from Buckingham Canal five regulator gates of 5x2.65 meters length and width were erected. This arrangement will come in handy to avert flood water inundating low lying areas when there was high volume discharge of water in Buckingham Canal joined with flood flow in Kandaveeti Vagu.