Staff Reporter

TIRUCHI: Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi will inaugurate the Ramanathapuram Combined Drinking Water Supply Scheme on April 14, Minister M. K. Stalin said on Friday.

Addressing reporters after inaugurating the trial operation of the first phase of the scheme at Muthrasanallur on the Cauvery banks here, he said the project would benefit 15.76 lakh people in five municipalities, 11 town panchayats and 3,163 rural habitations of Ramanathapuram, Sivagangai and Pudukottai districts.

The Rs. 616-crore scheme, for which Rs.514 crore had been spent so far, was conceived with the long-term needs in mind. While the demand for 2009 was 60 million litres, the optimum demand in 2036 would be 100 million litres. Mr. Stalin said the TWAD Board had executed the scheme, whose foundation was laid by the Chief Minister in January 2007, well ahead of the schedule. “Though the scheme was scheduled to be completed after three years, the Chief Minister, considerate of the dry areas of Ramanathapuram and adjoining districts, not only advised the officials to execute it within a couple of years but also announced rewards for expeditious implementation,” Mr. Stalin said.

The drawal of 0.0021 tmc would not disturb the groundwater table in Tiruchi.

TWAD Board Managing Director Swaran Singh said this was the first of a series of seven trial operations to be taken up.

Earlier, Mr. Stalin, accompanied by Ministers K.N. Nehru and N. Selvaraj, inspected the pipelines and headwork. Collector T. Soundiah was present.