Water supply disrupted in three panchayats

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, MAY 20. Drinking water supply in three panchayats in Neyyattinkara taluk remains disrupted as the pump and borewell of the Poozhikunnu Drinking Water Supply scheme were allegedly damaged by a section of the people living in the vicinity of the well about nine months back.

With the damaging of the pump, the situation has worsened in Kulathoor, Chenkal and Karode panchayats which were facing acute water crisis once the summer reached its peak, the locals said.

The Poozhikunnu Water Supply Scheme, which was commissioned in 1985, is the main source for providing water to the area. Water was being drawn from the borewell dug on the Kulathoor mudipura temple premises by the Kerala Water Authority (KWA). The 60-metre deep well with a diameter of 6 inches was reportedly damaged in August, 2000.

Thus, the only perennial water source for the public dried up. Attempts to dig borewells in the three panchayats have failed to bear fruit. The locals alleged that the pump was damaged by the people living near the scheme. They had been complaining that their wells had dried up after the borewell was dug for the scheme.

On receiving a complaint from the locals, the KWA personnel inspected the spot and found that the pump was damaged. The KWA personnel tried to lift the pump in their bid to resume supply. They found that the pump was jammed and decided to bring the rig and compressor to lift the pump from the well. Since the rig and compressor are attached to a lorry it would occupy at least one sq. metre around the well. The rig could not be made operational as the lorry could not enter the temple premises. Moreover, the locals resisted against the bid to resume pumping, sources said.

The KWA then sought the services of the Ground Water Department (GWD) to find out the reason for the snag. The GWD personnel found that the space between the pump and the casing pipe was packed with metal to block the supply of water from the well. Sources said that this was deliberately done to damage the pump and disrupt supply.

The KWA and GWD tried to dig another well in the vicinity but to no avail. Though the KWA has taken up the issue with the Pozhiyoor police, no action has been taken so far, the locals said.