Baje reservoir gets drier; CMC to ration water

Reservoir has 32 cm lesser water than last year: Minister Madhwaraj

District In-charge Minister Pramod Madhwaraj said the City Municipal Corporation (CMC) will start rationing water following the decline in the water-level in the Baje reservoir.

Speaking to reporters after visiting the Baje reservoir on Thursday, the minister said that the water-level in the reservoir is 32 centimetres lesser than last year’s and the inflow from the Shiroor reservoir too is decreasing.

“Water will be pumped from two pools across the Shiroor reservoir and collected in the Baje reservoir. The water will be accessible for 30 days. The availability of the water can be managed until April-end. In the month of May, however, there will be no water. In order to stock water for all of May, there is a need for water rationing,” explained the minister.

“The water rationing would be stopped if the district receives showers in the month of April. He urged the public to cooperate with CMC. In order to find ways to permanently eliminate water scarcity, the Municipal Council is embarking on elaborate plan under the KUDCEMP scheme. A sum of Rs 102 crore is spent on improving the distribution lines, to set up eight overhead tanks. Besides, measures will also be taken to improve the pumping capacity. If the pumping capacity is doubled, there would be no problem during power shortage,” said Madhwaraj.

He added that the water supply would be affected by even an hour of disruption in power supply.

“There is 800 kilometres of distribution line and around 1.5 lakh litres of water is required to fill the distribution pipes. Once the power is switched off, the water in the distribution lines will become empty. Pipes take about 16 hours to get filled and it should be ensured that the pipes do not turn dry,” he instructed and said the MESCOM MD has been instructed to ensure power supply for 24 hours.

Madhwaraj added that after he took charge as the district minister, an alternative express corridor line as the backup power source was drawn from Manipal along with the existing power line from Heeriyadka. Every year, the problem continues. A dam would be built at Shimbhra to overcome water shortage as water would be stored for at least 45 days in the proposed dam. A hydrological survey is required and measures would be taken for the work. The survey is necessary to check the feasibility.

The water rationing would include looking into the possibilities of lessening the burden on the mechanism as well as on the public. The alternative day’s water rationing plans sometimes would be problematic as the empty pipes pose problem and take longer hours to get filled. The high-lying areas would be offered tanker water if need arises.

Madhwaraj said that, as accountability is important, meters are put all over in the drive taken up to avoid the misuse of water.

Also, 550 faulty meters are replaced. He added that a water source has been identified at Yerlapady and it would prove immensely helpful, if the water is available at Yerlapady.

“Desilting is the most complicated work as the available water would be contaminated and it would be impossible to utilise the water especially during the crisis period. Drinking water is the priority as per the irrigation policy,” he said when asked about releasing water for farmers in the area.

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