Haryana restricts Yamuna flow, Delhi stares at water crisis

  • Neelam Pandey, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 06, 2015 12:54 IST

Water levels at one of the biggest sources, which helps meet the Capital’s requirements, has been falling for the past few days as Haryana has reportedly been not releasing enough water, causing panic among officials.

Water level at the Wazirabad barrage on the Yamuna has been consistently falling since May 28. Sources say that the CEO of DJB has written a letter to the principal secretary of Haryana (irrigation and water resource), asking him to look into the matter immediately.

Delhi’s chief secretary KK Sharma also wrote a letter to the chief secretary of Haryana to resolve the issue quickly.

In its letter, DJB argued that such disruption of water supply during summers can create unrest in public and even result in law and order problem. “I would like to bring to your notice that release of water to Delhi through Yamuna river has been suddenly stopped by Haryana since May, 28, 2015 resulting in a rapid decrease in the pond level at Wazirabad,” states the letter.

Every summer, Delhi faces shortage of water and engages in a tussle with Haryana. Both states cite their annual requirements and claim the other is demanding beyond the stipulated supply.

The SC in its 1996 order had asked Haryana to ensure that the Delhi Jal Board’s (DJB) treatment plants at Wazirabad and Haiderpur are full throughout the year so that the Capital meets its drinking water demand. DJB uses water from the Wazirabad barrage for two water treatment plants at Wazirabad and Chandrawal, respectively.

Officials say water production is normal so far, but if the waterlevel decreases further production will be severely affected.

Water at Wazirabad has reached a level where any further decrease could lead to disruption in production. The matter might be escalated at the chief ministerial-level if it is not resolved soon.

“We managed the current level of production by opening a connection between the Munak canal and the Wazirabad barrage but any further reduction waterlevels could lead to a crisis,” a DJB official said Earlier in the year, the Delhi government had written to Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar, asking the latter to maintain the level of water as stipulated by the Supreme Court (SC) in 1996.

Haryana officials could not be contacted despite attempts.

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