Water supply may not be affected this summer

The water level at the KRS near Srirangapatana in Mandya district was 108.68 feet against the full reservoir level of 124.8 feet as on Saturday.  

The scorching heat building up in south Karnataka has brought the focus on drinking water issues and storage levels in major reservoirs in the region.

Mysuru and surrounding areas are dependent on the Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS) and Kabini reservoirs to meet their drinking water requirements and the situation is not as precarious compared to the recent past. Back-to-back copious rains for three years and the prolonged monsoon with unseasonal rains as late as in November and December ensured that the storage levels are comfortable.

The water level at the KRS near Srirangapatana in Mandya district was 108.68 feet against the full reservoir level of 124.8 feet as on Saturday. Water at the rate of 30.43 tmcft was available for usage as on Saturday and this was more than sufficient to meet the drinking water requirements of the city and the surrounding regions. The water level at the KRS on the same day last year was 110.89 ft. The water level this year is comfortable compared to any of the preceding five years before 2020. It was 102.91 ft on March 7, 2019, 89.22 ft in 2018, 81.20 ft in 2017 and 91.43 ft in 2016. The available quantum in 2016 was at the rate of 16.81 tmcft compared to 30.43 tmcft available this year and hence the authorities are confident of meeting drinking water requirements.

Sources in the Vani Vilas Water Works said the State’s obligation to the lower riparian State has already been met and hence there was no pressure to release water in peak summer.

But the Irrigation Department has to manage the available water in a manner that does not deplete the level by releasing it from the dams to meet the requirements of the farmers in the region which tends to be the case during February/March. This will ensure that the drinking water crisis will not be an issue in the peak summer, they added.

Mysuru receives drinking water from the Cauvery and the Kabini and with two perennial sources of water, supply should not be an issue. But notwithstanding the storage positions in the reservoirs, scarcity of drinking water does affect parts of the city and surrounding regions. This has more to do with the distribution system rather than depletion at source, said the officials.

New facility

The city receives around 250 MLD (million litres a day) of water and there are plans for a new facility at Haleunduwadi which will augment the supply by another 150 MLD to cater to the future requirements of the city and also cover areas the Vani Vilas Water Works does not cater to given its infrastructure constraints. But Haleunduwadi located upstream of KRS is a work in progress for almost 10 years and has only received the administrative nod so far.

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Printable version | Apr 19, 2021 10:37:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/water-supply-may-not-be-affected-this-summer/article34015645.ece

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