The River Krishna is the second biggest river in the peninsular India and takes birth in the Mahadev range of Western Ghats. It rises in the Western Ghats at an altitude of 1,336.49 m above sea level near Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra and flows across the peninsula from West to East for a length of about 1,392 Km before it drains into the Bay of Bengal. It enters the State of Karnataka at its 304 Km and passes through the State for 480 Km and finally falls into Bay of Bengal near Bapatla in Andhra Pradesh . It is an interstate river flowing in three States viz., Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. The river basin is 2.57 lakh Sq. Km, and the States of Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh contributes 68,800 Sq. Km (26.8%), 1, 12,600 Sq. Km (43.8%) and 75,600 Sq. Km (29.4%) respectively. The Upper Krishna Project was originally conceived by the erstwhile State of Hyderabad along with the Lower Krishna Project (now known as Nagarjunasagar project). This project could not be initially implemented because the submersion was mostly in Bijapur Dist., which was then not a part of State of Mysore (Karnataka). After the reorganisation of states the scope of the project was modified so as to include two storage reservoirs.
In 1973, the Krishna Water Dispute Tribunal (KWDT) adjudicated on the sharing of Krishna river waters between the three riparian states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh. KWDT - I in its final order dated December 24, 1973 has allocated the 75% dependable flows of 2060 TMC of Krishna waters amongst three riparian states and the share of Karnataka State aggregated to 734 Thousand Million Cubic Feet (TMC) of water. The further report of the Tribunal dated May 27, 1976 also contained modification of the final order based on references made by different States under Section 5(3) of the Act. The Central government construed the aforesaid final order to be the decision of the Tribunal and accordingly published the same in the Extraordinary Gazette dated May 31, 1976 and on such publication the said final order has statutorily became final and binding on the parties to the dispute. To implement the award, the Government of Karnataka formulated a Master Plan comprising of various projects. One of these projects is the Upper Krishna Project under which it was proposed to utilise 173 TMC of water. In order to derive maximum benefits as early as possible, the project was envisaged to be executed in different Stages and Phases to utilise 119 TMC of water in Stage 1 and 54 TMC in Stage II.
The Krishna Water Dispute Tribunal - II
passed an award for sharing of Krishna Water on 30-12-2010. The allocations made by Krishna Water Dispute Tribunal - II
at 65% dependability and for surplus flows among three riparian states of Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh are under:
Out of allocation of 177 TMC of water to the Karnataka State under KWDT - II, 130.90 TMC is the share of Upper Krishna Project Stage - III.