Mysore, July 27 (KK&KMC)- The main cause behind the problem of water scarcity in the city is believed to be short-supply, as compared to the burgeoning population and the inadequate capacity of the supply system designed decades ago.

This dawned upon Mayor Sandesh Swamy who, in an attempt to get to the bare basics of the issue, visited the Melapura reservoir yesterday, along with a team of officials and conducted an inspection. The total quantum of water to be collected at the reservoir from various sources is 240 Million Litres per Day (MLD). However, only 190 MLD of water is presently being collected. What about the remaining 50 MLD, is the big question?

The project to supply water for the entire city from Melapura reservoir was started in two phases, first in 2002 and second in 2007, according to sources from the Vani Vilas Water Works.

The reservoir was expected to collect 100 MLD water; but presently it is able to collect about 75 MLD only.

The Belagola unit set up in 1969 collects only 13 MLD of water as against the expected volume of 16 MLD. At the Belagola second stage constructed in 1998, only 27 MLD of water is collected as against 36 MLD anticipated earlier. Similarly, at the Hongalli second stage, 32 MLD is collected as against the projected 36 MLD. However, there is no variation in the supply of 55 MLD of water from Hongalli third stage, the sources said.

The problem here is the mid-way tapping of water from the Belagola, Hongalli, Metagalli and other reservoirs for agricultural and industrial purposes. Losses incurred through leaks and pilferages add up to 30 per cent of the supply.

Revamping of the city’s water supply system under the JNNURM project may improve the supply network within the city. But there is no project to improve the supply of water from the sources to the city’s network.

Several sections of the machineries installed at Melapura reservoir are not functioning properly, which has further aggravated the problem.

A report to repair and enhance the functioning capacity of the machinery has been submitted by the Karnataka Urban Water Supply and Drainage Board (KUWSDB). If the project to repair and install higher capacity machinery is approved and implemented, at least 75 MLD water losses can be prevented.

There are 680 hand pumps and 860 electronic pumps in city drawing ground water directly as supportive sources. Yet, they are insufficient for the city's growing water needs.

Mayor Sandesh Swamy, speaking to SOM, said that those who criticise the City Corporation about erratic water supply must understand that proper water supply for the city depends on the availability of water in the reservoirs, which in turn, depends on the vagaries of nature.

"I will bring all the Corporators to the Melapura reservoir and impress upon them the prevailing problems. Subsequently, a committee comprising elected representatives, officials and technical experts will be formed to address the problem," he said.

VVWW Executive Engineer Subrahmanya, Assistant Engineers Nagaraj, Chennabasavegowda and others were present.

Courtesy : Star Of Mysore