Damage to pipeline: taps in city go dry

Water supply would be disrupted for two days, says Corporation commissioner

The supply of drinking water from Thumbe vented dam to Mangaluru city and surrounding areas was affected on Wednesday with the breakdown of 18 MGD pipeline, at Adyar, on the outskirts of Mangaluru.

Speaking to DH, Mayor Harinath said that 18 MGD pipeline – which was laid by the Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation (KUIDFC) with financial assistance from the Asian Development Bank – has been damaged at Adyar. “The work on repair has commenced and around 60% of the areas under the MCC were affected due to the damage to the pipeline,” he stated.

A press release from MCC Commissioner Mohammed Nazeer said that in the backdrop of the repair of broken pipeline, the water supply in Mangaluru would be disrupted for two days.

Terming the breakdown of the pipeline as a failure of the administration, opposition leader in the Council of MCC Roopa D Bangera said that the failure of the authorities in maintaining the pipeline has come to the limelight. “It is the common man who is facing inconvenience due to the lethargic attitude of the officials. When the pipeline was damaged in August 2015 – following the dumping of debris – the city did not get water for five consecutive days. The councillors had, then, urged the Corporation to make the main pipeline supplying water from Thumbe to the city visible, so that any breakdown could be plugged immediately. Lack of maintenance, however, has resulted in the pipeline being damaged once again, thus inconveniencing the citizens,” she criticised.

‘No proper reason’
Further, she said “Hoige Bazar, Bendoorwell, Mahakalipadpu and Bolar areas have been facing shortage of water although the city received good rainfall in June. When asked, the officials cite vague reasons like transformer failure and disruption in power supply for problems in water supply. The failure on the part of the Corporation in maintenance and distribution of water supply has affected the people. The mayor should initiate stringent action against officials who fail to maintain the pipeline.”

An official said that, of the two pipelines from Thumbe, one pumps water to Padil storage unit and another to the storage unit at Bendoorwell. “The pipeline supplying water to Padil unit has been damaged - hence, the pumping of water has been stopped from 2 am. The damage is suspected to be in a joint. As the pipeline is situated beneath the soil, four earthmovers have been pressed into service to remove the soil and locate the damage to the pipeline,” the official said.

Sources said that, although 160 MLD of water was pumped from Thumbe to the city, the actual availability of water for distribution was between only 90 MLD and 110 MLD. The rest of the water is wasted due to theft and seepage.

Shobhith, a resident of Valencia, said, “The water supply was disrupted on Tuesday night itself. I thought the water supply would be resumed by Wednesday morning, however, we did not get water the whole day. The water in the sump would be sufficient for a day. We will have to make alternative arrangement, if the water supply is not restored on Thursday.”

Sumalatha, a resident of Jeppu Kudpady, said, “The tap in the households of Jeppu Kudpady had gone dry since morning. My child could not reach school in time. We had to collect water from a well in my neighbourhood. Even to collect rainwater, there is not enough rain. Usually, Mangaluru is soaked in rain at this time of the year. However, this year, there is scanty rain,” she said.

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