BERHAMPUR: For the four lakh population of Berhampur, water scarcity has been a perennial problem. This year as a temporary measure, the administration has decided to install 100 temporary water tanks with 1,000 litre capacity each in all the 40 Wards under the Berhampur Municipal Corporation.
The initiative, though, will not suffice in meeting the water needs as most of the existing standposts in the city are lying defunct and pipes have been damaged at many places.
Surendra Choudhury, a resident of Hillpatana, said there is one standpost on the other side of Ganesh temple in the area. The standpost is located right over an overflowing drain. “Although sewerage water flows near the standpost, we were forced to use it. It went defunct a few days back and there has been no effort to repair it,” he said.
Laxmi Sahu of Lanjipalli said although the area has a functional standpost, water does not come for a long time. There is an open well nearby, which is used by the locals.
As per a rough estimation, the city requires at least 63 MLD (million litres per day) of water but official records put the figure at 56 MLD. At present, Dakhinapur supplies around 26 MLD, Rushikulya supplies 14 MLD and another six MLD is managed from borewells, said Sitaram Panda, Executive Engineer of Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED). He said the city has 2,004 standposts and 1,277 tubewells.
Apart from water from Dakhinapur and Rushikulya, water is also sourced from 74 borewells in the city. There are plans to sink another 14 borewells in Berhampur and work on five is in final stage.
In areas like Gosaninuagaon, Ankuli, Lanjipalli and Hillpatana that face acute water scarcity, seven tankers have been deployed to supply water round-the-clock.
After completion of Janibili water project, water crisis in Berhampur would be resolved, said Panda. The project would cost Rs.489 crore of which Rs.363 has already been earmarked by the Government for laying of pipelines and the rest of the money would be used for replacing damaged pipelines in the city.
Tender for the project has already been floated. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had laid foundation for this project in 2013.