‘Policy to regulate drilling of borewells being examined’ BENGALURU - KARNATAKA - 30/10/2018 : Harmander Singh, Principal Secretary ...

‘Policy to regulate drilling of borewells being examined’ BENGALURU - KARNATAKA - 30/10/2018 : Harmander Singh, Principal Secretary Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department, Govt. of Tamil Nadu, addressing media at Vidhana Soudha, on Bengaluru on October 30, 2018. The panel on Tuesday reviewed the progress made by the Urban Development department and various City corporations, particularly the BBMP, with regard to disposal of solid waste in a scientific manner. Photo: K. Murali Kumar / The Hindu   | Photo Credit: K_MURALI_KUMAR People should use water sparingly, says government official Tamil Nadu is facing one of its worst water crises in recent decades. Households, factories, educational institutions and hotels are struggling to procure water for daily use. With monsoon rain unlikely any time soon, the State government is under pressure to deliver. In an interview, Harmander Singh, Secretary to the Government in the Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department, talks about the short-term and long-term measures being taken to resolve the crisis. Excerpts: With no sufficient rain in sight, what is the government’s plan to manage the water scarcity in the State? We are identifying new sources of water and are using small vehicles to supply water [to buildings located] in narrow lanes. We are exploring all options, including cloud seeding. We are also talking to manufacturers designing technology to produce water from humidity. What happened to the desalination plants the government was planning to build on the East Coast Road? A desalination plant with a capacity of 210 MLD (million litres per day) is in operation now, and another one with a capacity of 150 MLD will start working shortly. With financial assistance from JICA , we are installing a plant with a capacity of 400 MLD. Water can be expected from the third desalination plant by the end of next year. Hospitals and educational institutions have been hit. Is there a special focus on them? Supply to hospitals, schools and other educational institutions is being taken care of. We are supplying water based on the requirement. We will also tie up with private parties if need be. There have been complaints about a lack of transparency in the supply of water through lorries in Chennai... As far as Chennai is concerned, the demand is over 525 MLD now, as opposed to only 450 MLD in 2017. There are cases where multiple house owners in a residential complex book water, and the lorries go there, only to find that they are all for the same booking. And, there are cases where lorries (drivers) are told that they [residents] have already bought water. These issues only delay the supply of water to the needy. We are trying to find a way to fix them. It is said that unregulated drilling of borewells in residential areas is aggravating the water crisis... The PWD is examining the issue and is in touch with various stakeholders to come up with a special policy to regulate the drilling of borewells. SOURCE TO COMPLETE ARTICLE ABOUT WATER CRISIS IN BENGALARU