S. Harpal Singh
Water level falls from 14 feet to 2 feet at the weir
ADILABAD: The 63-year-old fresh water tank at Mavala village near Adilabad town is facing extinction due to rapid siltation, which will also lead this fabulous source of drinking water to Adilabad town vanish. Immediate measures like desiltation and raising of height of the bund and weir need to be initiated to salvage this engineering wonder.
The tank was commissioned in 1947 with a capacity to supply 3.6 lakh gallons of water every day of the year. The method of pumping water over a distance of 7 kms to the filter beds in town is remarkable as it uses only gravity of the earth. Silt deposits over the years have decreased the capacity of the lake considerably. The original 14 ft depth of water at the weir has been steadily decreasing and now stands at just 2 ft.
Much less quantity of drinking water is drawn at present from this source. Besides, it is drawn only during the rainy and winter seasons.
Desiltation of Mavala lake can be taken up under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS). This may mean a long drawn out plan given the area to be cleared of silt deposits nevertheless, it will provide meaningful employment to wage seekers from the major gram panchayat of Mavala.
An excellent example of the efficacy of efforts to remove the silt from the tank bed is available at the smaller Mavala tank. Due to the desiltation work carried out in this irrigation tank last year its storage capacity has gone up.
The water in this tank will eventually be sufficient to irrigate 500 acres.