Kodagu faces crisis as water sources dry up

The district had witnessed flood five months ago and is experiencing a drought-like situation. 

Haradoor river in Somwarpet has dried up. DH photo.

Kodagu district, which faced natural calamity last year, is now facing a water crisis. The district had witnessed flood five months ago and is experiencing a drought-like situation. 

The 40 villages that faced flood and landslides is facing acute shortage of water even before the onset of summer. The rivers, rivulets and small streams are filled with silt. The sources of water are drying up in the district. 

Geologists have warned that the imbalance in water table following landslides in the region will continue for a few years in the district. The residents in villages of Kodagu have been depending on the natural spring from the hilly region for their day-to-day water needs. Now, they are worried over the impending water crisis. 

The Moovathokklu, Haleri, Mutlu, Kandanakolli, Madapura, Hattihole, Iggodlu, Mukkodlu, Meghathal, Hemmathal, Makkandooru, Devasthooru, Kalooru, Galibeedu, 2nd Monnangeri and Jodupala villages are facing a severe water crisis. 

Madapura Sandesh, a resident, said, “There were no instances of streams drying up in the village. The water from the stream was used for irrigating horticultural crops during summer. Now, the situation has changed.” 

Manjula of Hebbattageri village said, “We had seen rivulets around our village in the past. All of them have disappeared. We are struggling to fetch water for house
hold chores and irrigating farms.” The water level in River Cauvery, Mukkodluhalla, Hattihole and Haradooruhole has declined drastically. The soil from landslides have entered the streams. If the silt is not cleared, there are possibilities of streams overflowing during rainy season, said the residents. 

“It is natural to experience change in weather after a natural calamity. If the region gets normal rainfall for two years, the water table will improve.

A mild tremor was felt in Pushpagiri range before the natural calamity. The cracks in the hilly ranges coupled with heavy showers resulted in landslides. The soil from landslides have covered the sources of water,” said K R Babu Raghavan, agriculture scientist at the Ponnampet Forestry College.

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