CUTTACK: With heat wave condition prevailing across the State, the water scarcity has emerged as an additional crisis in the Millennium City. Reeling under the acute scarcity, people are forced to use unreliable water pouches which threaten to pose serious health risks. Though the officials of Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED) claim to have provided drinking water to the tune of 103 MLD against a requirement of 100 MLD for distribution in CMC areas, water crisis has raised its head in some parts of the City. As per PHED sources, the shortage of drinking water is mainly attributed to lack of coverage in piped water supply system.
Sources said Wards 48, 49, 56, 57, 58 and 59 of CMC arenow facing acute drinking water shortage. The worst hit areas are Jagatpur, Pratap Nagari, Utamapur and Subhadrapur where people are facing uphill task to collect drinking water. They have to cover a long distance to fetch drinking water. Most of the tubewells in the areas are not functioning properly due to depletion of ground water. In the absence of piped water supply system, they now depend on water pouches. “Water from the tubewells at Subhadrapur has been found to have high iron content and foul smell,” said Kalyani Nayak, a resident of the village alleging that there is no regularities in supply of drinking water through tankers by the CMC.
Superintending Engineer, PHED, Cuttack, Basant Kumar Senapti said though excess drinking water is being withdrawn, it is not possible for equal and equitable distribution due to distance from drawing point to coverage area. Similarly, ground water potential is very low in Jagatpur and Pratap Nagari areas, he added. In order to overcome the crisis, IOCL will set up a water treatment plant having capacity to produce 129 MLD with an estimated cost of `50 crore at CDA here. The PHED will take up other necessary works like construction of reservoir and overhead tanks. A piece of land has also been identified near Biju Patnaik Park here for the project, Senapati informed.