In view of the water crisis, the collector of Betul district in Madhya Pradesh has issued a blanket ban on construction work in the town.
The unprecedented order was issued on Sunday by collector Gyaneshwar B Patil in the wake of the drying-up of the reservoir that was created with the help of a stop dam on Machna river.
Betul, which has a population of 1 lakh people, requires 13 lakh litre water every day. These days, however, only 7 lakh litre water is being supplied to them, that too on alternate days.
“We have just two to three days of water saved for supply. Hence, we had to take this measure. The restrictions are on constructions in both government and private sector. To tide over the crisis, tube wells and dug wells are being acquired,” the collector told Hindustan Times over phone.
The prohibition order will lead to about 2,000 to 2,500 labourers going without work.
Since construction mostly takes place before rains, there is also no possibility of the work resuming in the next three to four months.
More than 45 districts in Madhya Pradesh are facing a drought situation forcing the administration to take extreme steps to combat the problem.
Last month, the collector of Tikamgarh district in Bundelkhand region, Priyanka Das issued a prohibitory order banning car washing with drinking water. This is the first time such a severe crisis of drinking water has hit the town, he added.
According to people in the area, if the water crisis deepens further, there may be a law and order problem.