ONGOLE: As the district has been facing drought-like conditions every year due to low rainfall and the absence of any major river water sources, people are suffering from severe water scarcity for both drinking and irrigation purposes. In around 90 villages of the district, the government has imposed restrictions on drilling borewells due to low groundwater levels.
In order to overcome the water scarcity problem, the government Panchayat Raj and Rural Development Department came up with an action plan to take up construction of community rainwater harvesting (RWH) pits under the “Manam- Mana Parisubratha” rural village cleaning programme. The programme had commenced last year.
The establishment of these community rainwater harvesting pits will help villages get rid of the drainage waste water and also in mitigating the mosquito menace significantly, as there will be no stagnation of drainage/ dirty water in low-lying areas. The MGNREGS supervising staff including the APOs, ECs and the technical assistants will monitor the construction works of the pits.
The district authorities will set up community rainwater harvesting pits in large numbers in rural areas of the district to replenish ground water. While the authorities are utilising MGNREGS funds, the District Panchayat Raj Department is monitoring the establishment of these pits in all the chosen Village Panchayats.
For the first phase, the authorities have selected a total of 112 Village Panchayats, 2 from each mandal limits out of a total of 56 mandals in the district. Currently, the district authorities have selected 52 Open Defecation Free Plus (ODF+) villages for implementing the programme. In these villages, a total of 110 pits (2 minimum in each village) are being constructed. A sum of `38,000 per pit has been allocated.
Among the 110 pits, construction works have begun for 38 pits and land marking has been completed for 42 pits. “The pit should be constructed using specific measurements i.e., 10 feet long, 10th feet wide and 8 feet deep. Close to the main pit, a smaller pit of 1 metre length, width and depth will be constructed. The water will enter the main pit via a low laying pipeline only after it is filtered through the smaller pit,” GV Narayana Reddy, DPO said.