Yamuna short of water, says DJB, asks Haryana to ramp up supply

Published on Apr 30, 2022 11:31 PM IST

A senior Delhi Jal Board official said the water level at Wazirabad pond has gone below the normal level of 674.5 feet, dropping to a “critical low level of 673.7 feet” on Saturday.

A dried up Yamuna riverbed near ITO Bridge, on April 29. (Raj K Raj/HT)
A dried up Yamuna riverbed near ITO Bridge, on April 29. (Raj K Raj/HT)

Amid extreme weather conditions and an ongoing heatwave in Delhi, the water level in the Yamuna has gone down, with the shortage resulting in supply cuts in some parts of the Capital and forcing the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) to seek release of additional water in the river from neighbouring Haryana.

A senior DJB official said the water level at Wazirabad pond has gone below the normal level of 674.5 feet, dropping to a “critical low level of 673.7 feet” on Saturday.

Also Read | Summer action plan: DJB to target 998MGD peak water supply

“Even the raw water flow through carrier lined canal (CLC) and Delhi sub branch (DSB) (two canals that carry water from Haryana to Delhi) is currently fluctuating... This has affected the lifting of 120 cusec of water from Wazirabad pond due to low pond level. This can affect water production adversely,” said an SOS sent by DJB to the Haryana Irrigation department on Saturday.

The communication, a copy of which has been seen by HT, asked the Haryana government to supply additional 150 cusec of raw water through the Yamuna to ensure that 120 cusec of raw water reaches Wazirabad pond, noting that the city’s water requirement is higher due to Covid-19 pandemic and peak summer season. The communication asks Haryana to release additional water till monsoon, when the water level picks up in the Yamuna.

Haryana government officials did not respond to requests seeking a comment.

A water deficient state, Delhi already faces a shortfall of more than 380 million gallons of water daily (MGD). Delhi government’s economic survey 2021-22 said that the total requirement of water was around 1,380 MGD in 2021, which is based on the norm of 60 gallon per capita per day (GPCD) and the government has targeted a peak level water supply of 998MGD under its summer action plan 2022.

With the volume of water flowing through the Yamuna, CLC and DSB canals low, DJB officials said that maintaining the water production level at water treatment plants (WTP) at Chandrawal, Wazirabad, Nangloi, Haiderpur and Dwarka is under threat.

Additionally, the Haiderpur WTP, the largest in the city which supplies almost a quarter of Delhi’s water supply, is facing operational problems.

DJB, in an official statement on Saturday, said that the Haiderpur plant production has been low for the last few days due to “excessive floating material” choking its filter beds. “We have started the cleaning of filter bed without compromising on the production. The production should become normal by May 1 evening. DJB is endeavouring to rationalise the water supply but water will be available at low pressure till the situation improves in parts of northwest Delhi, west Delhi, parts of south Delhi and the command area of Deer Park,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, parts of the city have been facing water shortage in the last week.

The Vasant Vihar Welfare Association took to social media to highlight water shortage for the last three days at the upscale colony.

Some parts of south Delhi’s Vasant Vihar received water on supply on Saturday.

Suresh Goel, a resident of Vasant Vihar, said they received water supply for a short while on Saturday. “We have been facing supply issues from last week but the problem became acute in last three days. DJB is saying that it is linked to Hairderpur plant filters but we are not sure if we will get the regular water share,” he said.

Shahbaz Singh, a resident of west Delhi’s Rajouri Garden, said that similar situation prevails in J-12 block of the area where “taps have been running dry for the last three days”.

Priyanka Aggarwal, who lives in south Delhi’s Deoli, said residents in her area have been facing water shortage for the last four days. “DJB should ensure that there is water for at least an hour each day. We are suffering due to shortage of drinking water in this hot weather,” she added.

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