Parched Chennai will get drinking water, assures CM

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With reservoirs supplying water to Chennai drying up and groundwater levels plummeting in absence of rain, water has become scarce but the government is taking necessary steps to supply drinking water to people, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K. Palaniswami said on Tuesday.

Interacting with reporters here, Palaniswami said that owing to the failure of rains, the groundwater levels have gone down.

People are using the water supplied through tankers for drinking and washing as the groundwater levels have gone down and hence the shortage, he said.

The reservoirs – Cholavaram (full capacity 1,081 mcft) and Redhills (3,300 mcft)- which cater to the Chennai’s water needs are dry while the storage at Poondi reservoir is 24 mcft as against the full capacity of 3,231 mcft, according to Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (Chennai Metro).

The Chembarambakkam lake (full capacity 3,645 mcft) has a water level of mere 1 mcf.

Palaniswami said water from desalination projects is also being distributed to people and urged people to cooperate with the government as groundwater will be supplied for the next four/five months till rains begin in October/November.

As regards water from the Telugu Ganga Scheme or Krishna Water, Palaniswami said only water could only be released to Tamil Nadu if there is 8 tmc of water in Kadaleru dam in Andhra Pradesh.

The water level at Kadaleru dam is presently about 4 tmc.

Palaniswami also said that water from the Mettur Dam is being released to fill up the Veeranam lake to supply drinking water to Chennai.