DHENKANAL: Heat wave condition may not be new for the people of Dhenkanal district, which has been recording temperature around 40 degree Celsius during this time of the year, but water crisis is. The town recorded 42.6 degrees on the day while it was around 40 degrees during this time last year.
Water scarcity has added to the woes of the people. With wells drying up and tube-wells defunct in several areas of the town, people largely depend on supply of water by Public Health Department (PHD). The PHD supplies water only once in a day against earlier provision of twice daily. The step has been necessitated to maintain a balance as water level in Brahmani and Ramiala rivers is depleting, said sources.
People waiting in long queues for PHD tankers has become a common sight. A family is allowed to fetch only five buckets of water, said a senior citizen Ambuja Sahani. On the other hand, the water of the tubewells that are functional emits foul smell and is unfit for human consumption. A housewife Sasmita Samal said, “We are using water very carefully due to the scarcity.”
Hirasagar pond, on which nearly 500 people living in the vicinity of the water body depend for their daily needs, has completely dried up.
PHD Assistant Engineer Ashok Kumar Mishra said, “Though we are trying our best to supply water to all areas, shortage of infrastructure and staff are acting as hindrances.”