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Flooded Mumbai has hardly any water to drink

It was a picture of contrast. This island city had its taps running dry while its roads were flooded with rain.

india Updated: Jul 09, 2009 00:43 IST
Amrita Kadam

It was a picture of contrast.

This island city had its taps running dry while its roads were flooded with rain.

Heavy showers early on Wednesday disrupted life in the bustling metro. The rains that began on Tuesday night and continued till Wednesday noon threw the city off gear during Wednesday’s rush hour.

Several parts of the city, especially central Mumbai and the western suburbs, witnessed disrupted suburban train services and huge traffic jams. Trains were late by nearly 20 minutes and bus routes were diverted, creating difficulties for commuters.

“There was waterlogging in low-lying areas but the situation returned to normal by evening. Trains were running late only by 10-15 minutes,” said the chief officer of the disaster management cell, Vilas Vaidya.

Many Mumbaiites reached their workplaces late or had to return home, soaked.

Earlier this week, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation reduced potable water supply by 30 per cent as water levels in the lakes that supply water to Mumbai dipped much lower than the drawable limits.

Two of the six lakes that supply water to the city have gone below their drawable limits. This means that the city would face a water shortage all through the year.

In a bid to avoid wastage of potable water, the civic body also began reducing supplies to swimming polls, construction sites and hotels.

Water cuts are no more limited to domestic users. They have been extended to government and semi-government organizations and the Railways as well, said deputy municipal commissioner Pramod Charankar, who is in charge of water supply.

The measures would save 200-300 million litres a day (MLD) in a city with a demand of nearly 4,350 MLD.

The civic body’s next potential targets are factories producing bottled water and aerated drinks.