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Satellite images confirm the grim reality, Chennai is running out of water

The water crisis in Chennai has even forced the employees at several IT companies in the state to work from home, which would, in turn, reduce the bathroom usage in offices.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: June 24, 2019 7:12 IST
Representative News Image
Image Source : NYT

Before and after images show depleting water in Chennai reservoir

These satellite pictures, as posted by the New York Times, reveal the present condition of a reservoir in Chennai. The city is facing severe water crisis and as per reports, Chennai's water supply board has planned to start sourcing drinking water from Jolarpettai in two weeks. 

The first satellite image, taken on June 15 last year, shows a dark blue Lake Puzhal. While the other image, taken this year shows a shrinking lake with a grey fraction.  

Moreover, the smaller Chembarambakkam Lake, considered one the other important reservoirs in the city, is also running dry. 

If we go by the normal phenomenon, Chennai should be in the throes of the monsoon by now. However, the city has not received the amount of rain that it should have by now. 

If reports are to be believed, this is the first time in 18 years, that Chennai will borrow water from other places. Surplus water supplied to Vellore through the Mettur drinking water project will be diverted to Chennai according to the plan. 

More so, the Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (CMWSSB) is reportedly reviewing ways to bring 10 MLD water to the city using a train with 50 wagons.

This scheme is being deliberated after Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami announced that Rs 65 crore has been allocated to bring water from Jolarpettai by train.

The water crisis in Chennai has even forced the employees at several IT companies in the state to work from home, which would, in turn, reduce the bathroom usage in offices. 

Even as tankers and alternative sources work as a relief to parched throats, employees from a cross-section of IT majors said their management have turned to various other ways to handle the situation. 

Not just offices, schools in Chennai are also struggling under a severe water crisis. Some schools have been closed for a few days, while some others have announced a half-days. 

It was last in 2001 that water was brought in wagons from Erode to Chennai to deal with water scarcity in the city.

Meanwhile, river Vaigai in Tamil Nadu has dried due to intense heatwave in the state. Water canals inside the river, used for drinking water have also emptied. 

The Vaigai river which flows along the cities of Madhurai, Theni and Andipetti, had dried as the region lacked monsoon rains in the last four years.

84 per cent of IMD's subdivisions record deficient rainfall

With the progress of monsoon still remaining sluggish, 84 per cent of the meteorological subdivisions have recorded deficient rainfall, MeT department data shows.

According to the Central Water Commission data, 59 out of the 91 major reservoirs in the country have storage below normal. Of these, 11 have zero per cent storage, making the water crisis acute.

The official rainfall season starts from June 1 to September 30, but the overall monsoon deficiency until June 22 still remains around 39 per cent.

Of the 36 meteorological subdivisions, 25 per cent have recorded "deficient" rainfall, while six subdivisions recorded precipitation classified under the "large deficient" category.

Odisha and Lakshadweep subdivisions have recorded "normal" rainfall. While Jammu Kashmir and East Rajasthan recorded "excess" rainfall, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands registered rainfall under the "large excess" category. 

Also Read | End to Greater Hyderabad's water crisis in sight as KCR inaugurates Rs 80,000 crore Kaleshwaram project

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