Nellore: Depleting groundwater levels alarm denizens

The water level in Somasila dips to 4.684 tmc ft which is lower than the dead storage level.

Nellore: Depleting water levels in several civic bodies, including Nellore, Sullurpeta and Kavali is increasing tension among citizens.

Most of the households depending on groundwater for needs are getting muddy water because of drop in groundwater levels in Nellore city. The situation is similar in Kavali too.

Somasila project is the only source of water for irrigation and drinking for the entire district. The water level dropped to 4.684 tmc ft against full capacity of 79 tmc ft, which is lower than dead storage level.

The officials dealing with drinking water supply are apprehensive over the situation as they have to supply water until September as rainy season starts from October in Nellore region.

At the instance of district officers, 250 cusecs is being released to address the water needs of Nellore city as against the water levels being 100 cusecs. Earlier the groundwater levels were only 25 cusecs.

Superintending engineer of Nellore civic body, Ravi Krishnam Raju said they are getting 100 cusecs and they are able to supply 84.16 MLD (Million Litres per Day) to the city. "We are the only civic body in the state to supply water twice a day for 47 out of 50 divisions,” Mr Krishnam Raju claimed.

However he expressed doubts over maintaining the same quantity pointing to 4 tmc ft left in Somasila and 5 months left for the onset of monsoon.

In Sullurpeta, people are being forced to buy water for drinking as water supplied by civic body is unfit to drink.

In some areas people are buying water for other needs as bore wells are yeilding salty water due to depleting groundwater levels.

Due to leakage from the pipeline, the water level is only 12 million litres at the summer storage tank in Kavali, against 25.5 million litres pumped from Chinakraka balanced reservoir. Water is being supplied on alternate days to manage with the available water now.

Groundwater levels dropped to an extent that Kalugolamma temple, which supplied water to 30 per cent of the town since decades, went dry for the first time. It became a garbage bin for people living in the area, a resident T. Raghuram of Kavali said.

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