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Closure of canal for repairs adds to water woes

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Women scramble for a pot of water near a tanker at Penkulapadu near Palacole in West Godavari district on Friday.
Women scramble for a pot of water near a tanker at Penkulapadu near Palacole in West Godavari district on Friday.

Staff Reporter

PENKULAPADU (WEST GODAVARI DIST): This habitation with 400 households, 7 km away from Palacole, is located right on the banks of the Narsapur canal. But it hardly helps the inhabitants quench their thirst in every summer since the canal is closed for repair works during the period every year.

Even as the canal is closed on April 10 to facilitate repair works, the scenes with big queues of empty pots and groups of women agonisingly waiting for the tankers have become a common sight since then in villages depending on the Godavari canal system for drinking water.

Agonising wait

A tanker filled with bore water comes from Jinnuru some 7 km away from Palacole for distribution in villages such as Digamarru, Navarasapuram, Mamidipalli, Chittavaru, besides this habitation once a day. “We do not know what time the tanker comes. We spend most of our time waiting for the tanker instead of attending to our household chores,” complains a woman.

Each woman is allowed to draw four pots of water and the whole members of that particular family will have to manage with that water till next day. “Each house-hold requires not less than 10 pots of water per day. We have to cope with the water rationing,” she commented while saying that they were eagerly waiting for the re-opening of the canal so as to end their water woes.

‘Hyper-sensitive’

The Rural Water Supply Department has identified around 700 ‘hyper-sensitive’ villages under the canal system in terms of availability of drinking water in the district and claims to be supply water to these habitations by engaging tankers in the current summer.


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