State seeks 4 tmc ft of water from Maha for North K'taka

State seeks 4 tmc ft of water from Maha for North K'taka

Siddaramaiah reviews measures to tackle drought in 12 districts

State seeks 4 tmc ft of water from Maha for North K'taka

 The State government has sought 4 tmc ft of water from Maharashtra to meet the drinking water needs of the parched districts of North Karnataka, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said on Sunday.

Speaking to reporters after holding a video-conference to review the drought relief work with deputy commissioners and chief executive officers of zilla panchayats of 12 districts of North Karnataka, Siddaramaiah said the initial response from Maharashtra had been positive.

He said a delegation comprising Water Resources Minister M B Patil and IT&BT Minister S R Patil will soon meet Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and make a formal request to release 2 tmc ft of water from Koyna and Kalammawadi reservoirs across Krishna and another 2 tmc ft from Ujjani dam to Bhima river.

Henceforth water stored in dams would be used only for drinking.
The districts of Bagalkot, Gadag, Haveri, Ballari, Bidar, Belagavi, Dharwad, Kalaburagi, Raichur, Vijayapura, Koppal and Yadgir are reeling under severe drought due to the failure of both the South-West monsoon and the North-East monsoon.

Siddaramaiah said water was being supplied in tankers to 270 villages in these districts. Alternative sources of drinking water were being explored in villages which do not have any water source. The Energy department had been directed to provide uninterrupted power supply to water pumping stations. The government had released Rs 50 lakh for each drinking water task force in assembly constituencies facing drought, the chief minister said. As many as 70 fodder banks and 11 goshalas had been opened, he added.

He said jurisdictional deputy commissioners would be held responsible for any lapses in drought relief works in their respective districts. District in-charge secretaries have been directed to visit their districts at least twice every month. They should interact with the local legislators and take steps to mitigate the sufferings of the people. They should visit fodder banks and goshalas and ensure there is adequate supply and stock of medicines, he said.

Siddaramaiah said district in-charge ministers have been directed to hold regular review of drought relief works in their respective districts. A cabinet sub-committee on drought would meet in Bidar in the next 10 days, the chief minister said.

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