Parts of city reel under water shortage again

Supply hit after rise in ammonia levels in Yamuna

A fresh water crisis erupted on Sunday in the national capital after high ammonia levels were found at the Wazirabad pond.

The treatment plants at Wazirabad, Chandrawal, and Okhla were shut down on Saturday after “very high” ammonia levels were found in Yamuna. Many parts of West, North and Central Delhi were did not receive any water on Sunday morning and evening after the plants were shut.

The development brought back the water woes of the residents who were grappling with acute water shortage during the Jat agitation in which the protestors had damaged Munak Canal in Haryana which supplies water to Delhi and the water supply was made normal only two days ago.

The Wazirabad pond supplies water to the Wazirabad, Chandrawal and Okhla water treatment plants, which have an output of 340 million gallons every day.

On Sunday, Delhi Water Minister Kapil Mishra along with a team of Delhi Jal Board (DJB) officials, collected evidence at various spots after receiving various reports of pollution being caused into water sources in Haryana.

According to the investigation, the ammonia levels were at 56 ppm, 100 times more than the allowed levels of 0.5 ppm. In addition to this, water being routed via Drain number 2 was found to have algae in it, which if not treated, can choke the filters at Chandrawal, Wazirabad, and Okhla Water Treatment Plants.

Black water
“There is black water flowing in from the Panipat drain with ammonia levels of 56 ppm which is more than 100 times the allowed levels of 0.5 ppm. Pictures taken near villages in Haryana, the Panipat drain and Drain number 2 taken at Khirkipur, Shimla Gujran and Sanjoli show black water entering the river in Haryana,” Mishra said.

“This flow of polluted water is in direct violation of Supreme Court guidelines, Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) orders and inter-state agreements,” he added.

Delhi government has requested Haryana to immediately shut down the Panipat drain, especially when Munak canal is broken and water is being re-routed to Delhi from elsewhere.

Mishra said that talks are on between the chief secretaries of both the states to resolve this issue on an immediate basis.

“We are writing to the CPCB, Home Secretary, and Union Ministry of Water Resources to immediately resolve this issue and ensure that lakhs of households in Delhi don’t suffer due to violation of rules by Haryana government,” the minister said. Water supply is likely to be affected even on Monday in North, West and Central Delhi.

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