Visakhapatnam: With the monsoon playing a truant and water levels plummeting in various pockets of the state, Andhra Pradesh seems to be heading towards an impending water crisis.
AP State Development Planning Society (APSDPS) in its recent report indicated that the groundwater table in around 284 wells (25 per cent of the sample size), which were used to keep a tab on the groundwater levels across the state, had gone down to 20 metres or more, posing a serious question over the availability of water resources in the coming days.
The percentage of wells with deep water levels is more in the districts of Chittoor (52 per cent), Kadapa (52 per cent) and Anantapur (46 per cent), followed by West Godava-ri (32 per cent), Prakasam (30 per cent) and Kurnool (20 per cent).
While the other districts are reeling from lowering water levels, surprisingly in most parts of Srikakulam, Visakhapatnam and Vizianagaram districts, the water levels are in the 3 to 8 metre range.
Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, the deputy director, Ground Water department, K.S. Sastry said, “With the Visakhapatnam district registering about 19 per cent more rainfall, the groundwater levels have actually shot up than normal levels.”
The worst-hit districts are Chittoor and Kadapa as the groundwater is available at an average depth of 31.16 and 26.55 metres in these districts respectively, which is almost five metres more when compared to the corresponding period in the last year.
Another groundwater department official, who wants to maintain anonymity, said that the scanty rainfall in the Rayalaseema districts is the reason behind declining water levels. He also said that increasing borewells and industrialisation had its effect on the water table.
The APSDPS report had also stressed on measur-es to enhance water levels by way of giving high priority for conservation, augmentation and management of groundwater resources such as rainwater harvesting and the rejuvenation of tanks and lakes in the states.
Location: Andhra Pradesh