Water crisis: Gujarat govt asks cops to save water

Gujarat is staring at a water crisis due to plummeting water levels at the SSD on the Narmada river and in the catchment areas of upstream dams in neighbouring Madhya Pradesh that received scanty rainfall in 2017

india Updated: Feb 18, 2018 14:52 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, Ahmedabad
Gujarat,Gujarat water crisis,Gujarat Police
A view of the Sardar Sarovar Dam that was dedicated to the nation by Prime Minister Narendra Mod at Kevadiya in Narmada district.(PTI File Photo)

Bracing for the looming water crisis in Gujarat this summer, state home department has issued an advisory asking officials to ensure that water is notwasted at police stations, staff quarters, or in jails.

Calling for “judicious use of water” in general, the advisory, issued recently, also listsseveral specific steps to be taken to stop wastage of water in the form of overflowing from overhead tanks at policestations, offices of senior officers as well as at all the police staff quarters across the state.

Gujarat is staring at a water crisis due to plummeting water levels at theSSD on the Narmada river and in the catchment areas of upstream dams in neighbouring Madhya Pradesh that received scanty rainfall in 2017.

As a result, Gujarat would get only 4.71 Million Acre Feet (MAF) water from dams on the Narmada river this year, 45% of the sanctioned share of 9 MAF.

As per the advisory, senior officials, such as rangeIGs and district superintendents of police (DSPs) need to checkas well as repair any leakage in pipelines or storage tanks atpolice stations, offices and staff quarters under theirjurisdiction.

The advisory asks officials to “monitor the filling of water in overhead tanks at policestations and staff quarters to avoid overflowing”.

As several police stations as well as jails have their gardens, officials have been asked to install sprinklers or drip irrigation system to save water.

The advisory also cautioned against excessive use of water in washing police vehicles and asked officials to make sure that drivers turn off the tap after finishing their task.

Officials have been asked to implement a system to check if all taps are properly shut during holidays.

“Instead of throwing away waste water, officials need toinstruct the employees to use it for water garden plants,” it stated.

The circular also directed offices and other premises underHome department to implement a system tostore rain water. It asked the Gujarat police housing corporation (GPHC) to incorporate rain water harvesting in all structures such as staff quarters or police stations that theywould build in the future.

As “trees are vital for good rainfall”, the department has asked all officers and employees to plant at least one tree and make efforts for its survival.

To motivate others in taking up the cause, officers can felicitate those employees who have done an outstanding work in conserving water, as per the advisory.

Stressing that all these instructions must be followed in a best possible way, the home department has made it “compulsory” for officers to monitor theimplementation of directions and sending a monthly report having photographs to the Home Department.

Reacting to the advisory, Ahmedabad inspector general of police AKJadeja said it is the need of the hour to save water.

Ahmedabad, Kheda and Anand districts fall under the jurisdiction of Jadeja.

“I have asked all the three district SPs to implement the advisory at their level. There are around 60 police stations in my Range. We will also put this advisory on the noticeboard of all our police stations. Water is precious andeveryone need to do their bit to save it” the officer said.

Chief minister Vijay Rupani had earlier said the problem of potable water stands resolved as the Narmada Control Authority (NCA) has allowed the use of seepage and dead water of the Sardar Sarovar dam on the Narmada river.

The storage in the SSD fell by 45%, the lowest in the last 15 years, mainly due to poor rainfall in Madhya Pradesh last monsoon.

Besides Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan are the two other beneficiary states of the project.

“The Narmada Control Authority (NCA) in a meeting held recently sanctioned the use of seepage and dead water of the Sardar Sarovar dam,” the chief minister had said.

The Gujarat government had reportedly sought permission of the NCA to utilise the dam water through Special Irrigation Bypass Tunnel (IBPT) after the water level in the Sardar Sarovar Dam (SSD) fell to an alarmingly low level.

First Published: Feb 18, 2018 14:52 IST