The Telangana government is moving towards the withdrawal of G.O. Ms 111. CM KCR himself announced the matter in the assembly on Tuesday. It is known that the twin reservoirs Osmansagar and Himayath Sagar were built during the reign of the Nizam to provide drinking water to the city of Hyderabad. Until a few years ago, these reservoirs were the main source of drinking water for the people of Hyderabad.
In order to protect these important reservoirs, the then government brought in G.O. Ms 111 in 1996. If the water in these reservoirs is polluted, the G.O. was issued on the grounds that if the reservoirs are polluted, it would have a serious impact on public health. According to the G.O., an area of ten kilometers around the twin reservoirs has been declared a bio-conservation zone.
It covers 84 villages in seven mandals of the Rangareddy district. The area is 538 square kilometers i.e. it is approximately equal to the GHMC area. Non-agricultural activities were banned in 1,32,000 acres in these 84 villages. With the order to allow such a large amount of land, which is very close to the city of Hyderabad, for agricultural activities only, there was a break for many activities in the area, including real estate.
But many businessmen, politicians, and real estate traders have invested heavily in the lands falling under these areas. Hundreds of farmhouses and villas came here. This is because the parties have promised to squash the G.O. if they come to power. Many have resorted to the courts seeking to have this G.O. revoked. Some environmentalists were fighting on the other side.
The government set up a committee in 2016 to look into the matter. But the committee has not yet submitted a report. Despite the High Court asking the Telangana government to submit the report of this committee, the government asked for some more time. CM KCR announced that the G.O. is redundant now as water for twin cities is now coming from Godavari and Krishna rivers. He said that there would be no shortage of drinking water in the city for another hundred years. The CM announced that the G.O. would be lifted as soon as the report of the expert committee was received.
The highest number of 47 villages in Shamshabad Mandal and 20 villages in Moinabad Mandal fall under this zone. 6 villages under Chevella, 3 villages each from Rajendranagar and Shankarpalli Mandals, 2 villages in Shabad Mandal, and one village in Kothur Mandal fall under G.O. Ms 111. If this G.O is lifted, the land prices here will increase hugely.