Karnataka

Drinking water crisis dominates drought meeting in Raichur

Raichur in-charge Minister Sharanprakash Patil speaking at a meeting in Raichur on Wednesday.—PHOTO: SANTOSH SAGAR  

The drinking water crisis in the district dominated a district-level meeting on drought here on Wednesday.

After touching upon a couple of points in the agenda, the meeting chaired by Minister of State for Medical Education and Raichur district in-charge Sharanprakash Patil discussed the the issue.

Deputy Commissioner S. Sasikanth Senthil told the meeting that water crisis was expected to hit 204 villages in the district. He said that the district administration was making preparations to handle the situation.

“We have planned a three-fold strategy to tackle the crisis. We will take possession of private water-yielding borewells in areas where public borewells have become defunct and provide water to the people. In areas where water is available easily, we will drill borewells. Wherever these two options are not possible, we will provide water through tankers,” he said. As many as 124 villages in the district would have to be supplied water through tankers, he added.

Sindhanur MLA Hampanagwoda Badarli suggested that more open tanks could be constructed across rural areas to tap surface water sources.

MLAs, MLCs and other elected representatives, with one voice, attributed the water crisis to corruption.

“In Deodurg alone, around Rs. 66 crore was spent for drinking water projects in the last few years. However, none of the projects are functioning,” Shivanagowda Naik, MLA, pointed out. Supporting him, Hampanagowda Badarli and Pratapgowda Patil, MLAs of Sindhanur and Maski, demanded an inquiry into the defunct water projects.

Accepting the demand, Mr. Sharanprakash Patil suggested that all the MLA hold meetings of officers in their constituencies and make a list of water projects that were defunct so that an inquiry could be initiated.

“Make a list of water projects that are defunct even after full payment. Also, make a list of long-pending projects and other irregularities. Let us initiate an inquiry,” he said.

Mr. Patil told the Deputy Commissioner and Kurma Rao, Raichur Zilla Panchayat Chief Executive Officer to hold an officers’ meeting in each taluk once in every 15 days till the summer was over to explore means and ways to address the drinking water crisis. He told them to invite people’s representatives to the meeting without fail.

The Minister directed the panchayat development officers to keep their mobile phones on and not to leave their headquarters without prior permission. “Action will be taken against officers whose mobile phones are found to be switched off and those who are not at their headquarters,” he said.

Mr. Patil also directed the Gulbarga Electricity Company officials to mandatorily supply electricity to drinking water project round the clock.

Shivaraj Patil, Tipparaj Hawaldar and Hampayya Naik, MLAs; N.S. Boseraju and Basavaraj Patil Itagi, MLCs; and Chetan Singh Rathor, Superintendent of Police, were present.

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Printable version | Oct 28, 2020 5:26:54 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/drinking-water-crisis-dominates-drought-meeting-in-raichur/article8363180.ece

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