This year, kharif crops may not get water from Tungabhadra dam

The Tungabhadra dam in Hosapete of Ballari district has never failed to supply water for kharif crops, even during the seven non-surplus years. This year however, apprehension is rife that the dam will not be able to supply water, owing to the failure of the monsoon.

The level of water in the dam, on Thursday stood at 1,613.07 ft as against its full reservoir level of 1,633 ft.

The inflow was at the rate of a meagre 196 cusecs, while the discharge into the canals was at the rate of 7,621 cusecs. The water augmented was 41.464 tmcft.

Last year on the same day, the level was at 1,625.54 ft with inflow at the rate of 4,784 cusecs and outflow at the rate of 6,659. Around 74.639 tmcft of water had been stored. However, owing to low storage, water was not released for raising the second crop in the command area. The available water iwas reserved to meet drinking water requirements.

Storage capacity

Compared to last year, the storage capacity is very less and may not suffice for supplying water for the first (kharif) crop. K. Govindulu, Superintending Engineer (retired), Tungabhadra dam, who has been studying the dam’s performance closely, says that for the time in the history of dam, the Tungabhadra command areas may experience a shortage of water even to raise one crop this year as a result of the failure of rain.

“As per our records, Tungabhadra dam has not failed to provide water for at least one crop even in the worst of seasons. This year however, owing to the failure of rain, we may face a shortage of water for the kharif crop,” he told The Hindu. He expressed hope that the dam may get a better inflow during the post-monsoon rain.

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