TAKBA (SAMBALPUR): For the people of Takba village, water was a scarce commodity. A lone tube-well was the only source of water for a population of nearly 2,000 of the village under Sindurpank gram panchayat in Maneswar block. The Haradjoar Nullah, which flows along the village, was their only source of water. But all this was about four years ago when the villagers decided to tide over the crisis.
On the fringes of Sambalpur City, Takba is located atop a plateau and is a dry zone even though Haradjoar Nullah flows along. After years of neglect, the villagers decided to dig up a seven feet deep well in a corner of a dry water body, identified as Bhoir Bandh. The well has been meeting their drinking water needs.
To their advantage, the ground water recharge is good and the villagers do not use rope to draw water but easily lift it in buckets. The water from the dug well is complemented by the lone tube-well and villagers manage to meet their needs in summer.
But the situation does not remain same throughout summer, as Haradjoar will stop flowing from first week of May. Release of water from Hirakud dam into the canal will be stopped to facilitate harvesting of rabi crop till June 15.
After the flow of water to the nullah stops, people depend on water accumulated in the ‘Darhas’ and ‘Chaun’, pits on the rocky nullah bed, for the rest of the season.
The villagers had hoped to get pipe water supply after Takba was merged with Sambalpur Municipal Corporation (SMC) in November 2014. But their hopes fell flat as they are yet to get any benefit from the new status and continue to depend on the dug well for their needs.
Sarojini Acharya (45) of the village said had Haradjoar not flowed through the village, they would have suffered like lakhs others from water scarcity in the district. The administration could have provided pipe water project to the village, but all our pleas have fallen on deaf ears, she said.
Champei Badhei (55), another villager, said tube-wells fail to ooze water due to the rocky bed. The water bodies have been lying in a state of neglect for the last 25 years. “The administration supplies tanker water only once in a day in June, which is insufficient for us,” she added.
Ironically, Rengali MLA Ramesh Patua said he would visit the village and take up the matter with the authorities concerned. Deputy Commissioner of SMC, Sudhanu Kumar Bhoi, said the village was covered by RWSS and now it is under the jurisdiction of PHED. Plans are on to provide water in the village, he added.