BBMP to drill borewells, fix over 1,000 tubewells | Bengaluru - Hindustan Times

BBMP to drill borewells, fix over 1,000 tubewells

BySharath Sharma Kalagaru, Bengaluru
Feb 25, 2024 12:04 PM IST

BBMP officials said, they held a meeting on Saturday to devise a comprehensive strategy aimed at alleviating the city’s water woes


Private tankers are charging <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>800 and sometimes even <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>900. (HT)
Private tankers are charging 800 and sometimes even 900. (HT)

As Bengaluru experiences a premature onset of summer heat, concerns over water scarcity have intensified. In response, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials said, they held a meeting on Saturday to devise a comprehensive strategy aimed at alleviating the city’s water woes.

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The meeting headed by additional chief secretary of urban development Rakesh Singh, stressed the urgency of the matter. Singh emphasised the need for immediate action to prevent citizens from enduring water shortages. He urged collaboration with the authorities of Bengaluru Water and Sewage Supply Board (BWSSB) in order to swiftly identify and resolve water-related challenges across different BBMP zones.

“Zonal commissioners were entrusted with the task of assessing water problems in their respective areas and determining the necessary funding to tackle them. A substantial budget of 131 crore was earmarked for drilling bore wells in priority zones, including Mahadevpur, RR Nagar, Bommanahalli, Dasarahalli, and Yelahanka, alongside 110 surrounding villages,” said a release from BBMP.

BBMP chief commissioner Tushar Giri Nath echoed Singh’s sentiments, stressing the critical importance of averting water shortages, particularly as summer approaches. Giri Nath issued directives for immediate measures to ensure a steady water supply throughout the municipality.

In response to identified challenges, officials expedited the tender process for bore well drilling in areas grappling with scarcity.

Additionally, temporary measures, such as deploying water tankers, were implemented to ease pressure on existing resources, particularly on RO plants.

“Efforts are also underway to address the depletion of tubewells within the city. With more than 1,200 tubewells dried up out of 10.84 lakh connections, authorities have prioritised repairs and maintenance to restore their functionality,” officials said.

The chairperson of BWSSB, Ram Prasat Manohar, highlighted the imminent water demand, stating, “Approximately 9.48 TMC of water from February to July 2024 is required. Plans include acquiring additional tankers and completing the fifth phase of the Kaveri water project by April to meet this demand.”

Giri Nath opined that “The installation of Syntex tanks in strategic locations across the city has already proven effective in providing drinking water to residents. Further deployment in slum areas and other zones is planned to bolster access.”

In the older parts of Bengaluru such as Jayanagar, Basavanagudi, Vijayanagar, Malleswaram, Sheshadripura and surrounding areas, water scarcity is less, as compared to the extended areas of the city. IT hubs like White Field, Electronics City, Marathahalli, Nagavara, Bagalur and other places where tech parks are in more numbers are facing the real heat, said officials.

According to Shridhar Naidu, the residents association president of BSR Signature Apartments in Kothnur, since the start of February, the residents are forced to buy eight to ten tanks of water on a daily basis.

“Earlier the price per tank (5,000 litres) varied from 500 to 650. But now it is costing 800 and sometimes even 900. Private water providers say that this will continue to increase the prices in the coming days. Water shortage is a huge burden on the residents,” Naidu said.

A private water supplier Girisha BG in K Narayanapura locality, which is close to Manyata Tech Park, says they are unable to meet the demand.

“Usually only after March, we used to get a lot of orders from residents and offices. But this year, the demand has increased since mid-January. We can’t reduce the prices. When there is a scarcity and more demand, prices will go up naturally. We have three borewells and pumps from which we get over 200,000 litres of water every day. We are worried that two of the bore wells might dry up if we pump huge amounts of water,” Girisha added.

The state government has been discussing to get water from over 400 kilometres away Sharavati River, said those familiar with the development.

However, there is a huge uproar against the plan from the residents of Western Ghats.

“We have given our agricultural lands to provide electricity to the state and now the capital city is trying to snatch away our water. Bengaluru is a monstrous city and too greedy,” said a furious Shankar Sagar who is a Western Ghats rights activist and president of Paschima Ghatta Karyapade.

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