MCT launches scheme owing to water scarcity on the hills
The thirst for water of devotees of Lord Venkateswara is expected to be quenched, with the Municipal Corporation of Tirupati (MCT) having taken up the ambitious task of pumping Telugu Ganga water to Tirumala Hills.
With the TTD management sounding an SOS over the water scarcity on the hills, the State Government directed the MCT to supply water to Tirumala. Though perplexed at the diktat, as the city is already reeling under a water crisis, the MCT had but to initiate the mammoth task last weekend.
The Telugu Ganga water flowing in Kandaleru-Poondi canal is pumped up to Kailasagiri summer storage tank near Srikalahasti and further to Yanadi Colony, from where it flows on gravity to the next stage at M.D. Puttur. From here, it is sent to Mangalam on the city outskirts, from where it is purified at the elevated filter bed before being dumped in the sump at the TTD’s S.V. Poor Home compound. It is then pumped to Alipiri and further to Srivari Mettu in the ‘reverse direction’ using the existing pipeline bringing water from Kalyani dam to the city. Defying gravity, it is from this point that the water starts its ‘upward’ journey to Tirumala hills through the pipeline laid a decade back to supply Kalyani water to Tirumala.
The MCT will supply 6 MLD (million litres a day) to the TTD, while the balance will be met from the dams atop the hills. In fact, the scheme is a blessing in disguise to the MCT, as the water supply to TTD is on payment basis, at the rate of Rs. 36 per kilo litre.
“After offsetting the huge electricity charges incurred, it leaves us with some revenue,” MCT Commissioner T. Sakala Reddy told The Hindu on Monday.
More water for city
The diversion will not, however, affect the city’s drinking water needs. To make up for the water diverted to Tirumala, additional water has been allocated to the city and even released from Kandaleru reservoir, which is learnt to be flowing somewhere near Venkatagiri, thanks to the initiative by the public representatives of the district.