The drop in the groundwater table in Palar river has resulted in a severe water shortage in many parts of the southern suburbs of Chennai including Chitlapakkam.

The suburban area receives Palar water only once in 25 days. Prior to the crisis, the drinking water from Palar was filled in the Chitlapakkam overhead water tank and was supplied to the residents of Chitlapakkam. At present, out of 20 wells in the Palar riverbed, only a couple of them are rechargeable. In Muthulakshmi Nagar, Chitlapakam, where there is severe shortage, the Chitlapakkam Town Panchayat is supplying drinking water through water tankers.

“The town panchayat should continue to supply drinking water through the tankers till Palar water supply is restored. The authorities concerned should take immediate action to ensure that Palar drinking water supply is restored at the earliest by repairing the existing faulty wells,” L. Sundararaman, president, Chitlapakkam Muthulakshmi Nagar Welfare Association, said. Official sources in the Chitlapakkam town panchayat said there was severe water scarcity in Chitlapakkam.

Sources pointed out that at present drinking water was supplied through water tankers. Steps would be taken soon to restore regular Palar water supply at the earliest. “The Chennai Water Scheme, which has been planned for a few areas, including Pammal, Pozhichalur, Pallavaram and Chromepet, should be extended to Chitlapakkam,” R. Muthuraman, a resident of Chitlapakkam, said.

The Pallavapuram Municipality has introduced the new water scheme for the residents of Pallavaram and Chromepet. With this initiative, water will be sourced from Chembarambakkam Lake, and brought to Pallavaram through Porur and Kundrathur. The project is implemented by the Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (CMWSSB). The scheme is expected to be implemented by the end of next year. People in all parts of Pallavaram and Chromepet would be able to get adequate supply of drinking water once the scheme is implemented.

The residents also demanded de-silting and deepening of water bodies in the suburbs including Chitlapakkam Eri, which helps in recharging ground water.