Aqueduct of Varuna canal in poor shape

The structure passes over a highway and several peripheral roads

Aqueduct of Varuna canal in poor shape

The aqueduct of Varuna Canal, constructed on the outskirts of the city, for irrigation purpose in a few taluks of Mysore district, is now in poor shape.

Owing to poor maintenance, water has been gushing from several portions along the 1.8 km aqueduct of the canal, posing a threat. The aqueduct is constructed at a height of 16 metres, and passes over the Bangalore-Mysore Highway, several peripheral roads and a railway line.

Officials of the Major Irrigation department said, the leakage is due to the weathering phenomenon of ‘expansion joints’ in the concrete structure. They feel that the structure will not be affected by leakages, and will be plugged soon.

According to the Water Resources department website, the 1.8 km aqueduct is the key part of the 135 km stretch of the Varuna or Krishnaraja Sagar Right Bank Canal. The canal irrigates an area of 80,000 acres, benefitting Mysore, T Narsipur, H D Kote and Nanjangud taluks of Mysore district and Srirangapatna taluk of Mandya district. The department also fills up 34 lakes using the canal, after enough water is supplied for irrigation.

Expansion joints

Ramakrishna, Executive Engineer of the department, said, the leakages are mainly seen near expansion joints. The joints offer continuity and stability to the overhead cement structure, reducing the affects of expansion and contraction due to heat.

“Expansion joints are made of a special material, and have a lifespan of about 15 years. These joints were constructed in 1998, and there has been some wear and tear due to the weathering effect,” he said.

When asked about the leaks in places outside the expansion joints, he said, there were plans to repair the canal, early next year. “We will stop the flow of water into the canal during the month of December and take up works on expansion joints. Other minor leaks will be plastered,” he said.

He said, a proposal in this regard has been submitted to the State government and the funds are expected to be released soon. However, he refused to divulge information about the estimated cost of the project.

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