Chitravati barrage on verge of drying out

Chitravati barrage on verge of drying out

Citizens worry as water in the barrage is expected to last just about 10 days more

The simultaneous failure of monsoon and drying up of the Chitravati barrage in Paragodu, on the outskirts of the town has put citizens in the taluk in serious trouble.

Drinking water become a rarity in both rural and urban areas, with the supply fast diminishing in relation to the requirement, especially in the urban areas. The taluk itself lacks any river or major tank for consistent water supply. 

The level of water in borewells too has fallen. Some wards in Bagepalli town get water once every 5 days. Attempts are made to get water by sinking borewells in the wards, but there is no proper sign of water.

Worse, with both Bagepalli and Gudibande towns heavily dependent on the Chitravati barrage, the increasing quantity of silt in the barrage become worrisome. 

Wards in the town that are supplied water from the barrage get mud and dirt filled water. Contractors who were employed during the construction of the Chitravati barrage failed to clean up the water of silt and mud. 

The water collection level in the barrage has therefore gone down a lot. The water in the barrage is expected to survive just about 10 days more and there is every sign of the water body drying up completely this summer.

Going by the population survey, every citizen in Bagepalli town is supplied just one-third of the requirement. Water shortage in the town amounts to 20 lakh litres.

Women in Bagepalli spend most of the time queueing up in front of water taps and then carrying the water pots home. That there is no definite time for the water supply means they are forced to wait for hours waiting near the taps.

The water lines installed in the town 40 years ago are in dilapidated condition. In some wards water from the leaking pipes flows into the drains or on the roads. The potholes on the roads are often filled with such wasted water.

Unlicensed water lines

Some people with political influence have taken new water lines without licence. Also, the number of unlicensed water lines is increasing, which means about half the water supplied in the town is free of charge.

L Shrikanth, chief officer of Bagepalli Town Municipal Council, told Deccan Herald that unlicensed water lines connected by political or influential persons will be cleared at the earliest.

Nagappa, a resident of Ward 1, said the municipality had taken no precaution to avoid problems related to drying up of the Chitravati barrage and decrease in the borewell water levels. “They should also inform the citizens of each ward when they will supply water. Then, women and children need not wait for hours near the water taps,” he added.

Bagepalli water statistics

* Wards23

* Residents27,000

* Borewells sunk29

* Working borewells21

* Dried up borewells8

* Overhead tanks4

* Licensed water lines3,100

* Unlicensed lines 600

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