Delhi water supply at season’s nadir, compounds summer woes | Latest News Delhi - Hindustan Times
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Delhi water supply at season’s nadir, compounds summer woes

May 28, 2024 01:30 AM IST

Residents in parts of central, north and south Delhi areas, such as Vasant Kunj, Model Town and Timarpur, among other places, complained of acute shortage

Amid an intense heatwave and record temperatures in Delhi, water supply hit a season-low on Monday, with the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) supplying only 966.16mgd (million gallons a day), which was below the usual supply of 1,000mgd by 33.84mgd and below the estimated water demand of 1,290mgd by 323.84mgd, according to DJB data.

Residents of Kalyanpuri scramble to get their share of water from a DJB water tanker. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)
Residents of Kalyanpuri scramble to get their share of water from a DJB water tanker. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)

Residents in parts of central, north and south Delhi areas, such as Vasant Kunj, Model Town and Timarpur, among other places, complained of acute shortage, alleging their daily routines were disturbed.

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A senior DJB official, not wanting to be named, cited a reduction in water treatment due to the low level of the Yamuna at Wazirabad Pond. “We also faced power failure at the Sonia Vihar water treatment plant and there was complete power failure between 11.20am and 12.20pm. There were other three instances of power fluctuations that impacted the water supply at this facility,” the official said.

According to DJB data, there has been a constant decline in water supply over the past week, with the supply levels logged at 984mgd on May 23, 983.2mgd on May 24, 980.73mgd on May 25, 969.32mgd on May 26 and 966.16mgd on May 27, all below the 1,000mgd supply mark.

The Wazirabad Barrage in north Delhi forms the primary holding area where raw water is lifted for the Wazirabad and Chandrawal treatment plants, but dwindling water levels have impacted areas that feed these plants.

The Wazirabad plant is fed by the Yamuna and carrier-lined canal from Haryana and usually supplies around 134mgd to the north and central Delhi areas. However, the current production is at 110mgd. The Sonia Vihar facility, which is fed by the Upper Ganga Canal, usually supplies 143mgd to east and parts of south Delhi. The production here fell to 131mgd, according to DJB data.

DJB, through a 15,473-km-long pipeline network, supplies 1,000mgd to 21.5 million people in summer. On average, a disruption of 1mgd adversely impacts around 21,500 people, officials said.

Vasant Kunj and complaints

DJB on Monday recorded 980 water-related complaints on its helpline, of which 714 were about zero water supply and others about low pressure and contamination, among others.

Read Here: Uptick in Delhi Jal Board output, politics persists

Vasant Kunj, which is located at the tail-end of the supply network, has been facing a water shortage over the past week, with the situation gradually worsening, according to residents.

Rajesh Panwar, who heads the federation Vasant Kunj residents’ welfare associations, said that the supply over the past 10 days has been going down and currently, almost all sectors (A, B, C and D) are facing a shortage. “Vasant Kunj is the last end of the supply line and we are facing maximum problems. Residents with water motor pumps get some water but the net availability has gone down. If, say, a family was getting 1,000 litres of water, they now have to make do with 400-500 litres,” he said.

Panwar said that DJB’s tanks, used to locally store water, are not getting filled.

Water is supplied to Vasant Kunj through a 3-million gallon capacity larger underground reservoir located in a pocket of B1, fed by the Sonia Vihar water treatment plant. The larger reservoir feeds smaller reservoirs in different pockets.

Read Here: Water supply hit in pockets of Delhi as Yamuna levels dip

Vinod Pant, former chairman of the federation of Vasant Kunj RWAs, said that residents’ WhatsApp groups are now flooded with water-related complaints. “If we are getting only 84% of the water supply, users with motor pumps get their share, but the ones located at the end of colony get nothing. This problem may only worsen in coming days if steps are not taken to rectify the situation,” he said.

A series of complaints were also lodged by residents of Yamuna Vihar, Hauz Khas, Preet Vihar, Shriniwaspuri, Kishangarh, West Patel Nagar, Molarband and Lado Sarai, among other areas.

Sandip Jadav, a resident of West Patel Nagar, said the evening supply has currently ceased due to the shortage. “The water comes hardly for 5 to 10 minutes and it is simply not sufficient to cater to our needs. What is the point of excess treatment if people are not getting water at the end?” Jadav said.

Dwarka to face cut

DJB on Monday said that water supply to the Dwarka sub-city and surrounding areas, supplied by the Dwarka water treatment plant, would be impacted for around 24 hours from 10am on May 29 to 10am on May 30, for shifting a water pipeline valve.

“(Water supply will be impacted) Due to shifting of 200mm air valves on 1500mm-dia twin raw water main feeding to Dwarka WTP near Karala-Kanjhawala Road by NHAI. The affected areas include Dwarka sub-city, Mahavir Enclave, Vijay Enclave, Uttam Nagar, Madhu Vihar , Sagar Pur, Raj Nagar Chanakya Place and adjoining areas. Residents are requested to store sufficient quantity of water,” an advisory said.

DJB said water tankers will be available on its helpline during the shutdown.

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