They will be used if the KRS water-level dips to 70 ft
Anticipating a drinking water crisis in summer owing to the fall in the water-level at the Krishnaraja Sagar, emergency pumps that were last operated a decade ago have been kept ready.
The pumps would be pressed into service only when the water-level in the dam falls to 70 ft.
On Thursday, the water-level stood at 75.8 ft against the maximum of 124.8 ft, according to official sources here.
Two turbine pumps, a centrifugal pump and two pumps (with capacity of 100 hp and 200 hp respectively) had been overhauled for emergency pumping from the riverbed near Hongalli, about 15 km from the city. “About 50 mld (million litres per day) of water can be drawn from the riverbed daily using these pumps,” said sources in the Vani Vilas Waterworks, Mysore. Hongalli pumping station has a capacity to pump 90 mld. “If the water level falls to 70 ft, water cannot be pumped from the right bank low-level canal. This reduces the amount of water pumped by at least 45 mld,” the sources said.
They pointed out that the infrastructure was ready and power supply had also been restored.
The water pumped from the riverbed would be drawn to the main treatment plant and, thereafter, supplied to the distribution system.
“Steps have been taken anticipating severe water crisis this summer due to failure of monsoon,” they said, adding that rationing of water to some areas would become inevitable if pumping from the riverbed became inevitable.
However, the situation might improve if there were summer showers in March, they added. The Mysore City Corporation has sought Rs. 2.8 crore from the State government to take up emergency steps to ensure drinking water supply in the city during summer. “A sum of Rs. 30 lakh is necessary to operate the emergency pumps,” the sources said.
If there was a crisis, water would be supplied through tankers to the scarcity-hit localities. If required, borewells would be deepened and hydrofractured to improve water yield. Some localities such as Vijayanagar are supplied borewell water.
Of the 1,490 borewells in the city, only 850 are active. Of them, about 90 were not being used after the Kabini drinking water project was commissioned.
This project supplies 40 mld to some parts of the city. The Melapura drinking water scheme provides 70 mld.