|May 7, 2016 at 1:58 pm #6463|
Joao Sousa M | NT
VELIM: With the rise in mercury levels, water scarcity has hit some high altitude areas in Velim and Ambelim in Salcete taluka with ‘tail-end’ users are worst affected. However, PWD officials are insisting that there is no water shortage but an artificial shortage due to increased demand for water.
A random survey by this paper suggests that people of the constituency are eagerly awaiting the commissioning of two water pipelines.
Highly-placed sources in PWD requesting anonymity informed that there is no shortage of water but the demand of water doubles up in summer which actually results in drop in water pressure and water does not reach areas at the far end of the distribution line referred to as tail-end areas.
He also said that a lot of people come down during the summer vacations besides people use water for watering plants, etc which is the basic problem adding that the distribution pattern cannot change however the department puts buster pumps etc wherever required.
Water requirement of Salcete is around 112 MLD and there is a shortage of around 10 MLD however the shortage is further aggravated with the influx of domestic tourists who come into the state for summer vacations.
A villager from Velim informed that the water has been irregular for the last few days. He said that the worst affected are the small pockets on elevated terrain where they receive water for two to three hours. He said that the department is in the process of installing booster pumps at various places to boost the water supply.
He further said that the provisions of the health act to issue water connections for constructions is also putting a lot of burden on the water distribution patterns as huge quantity of water is drawn for construction which is a huge loss for the government.
Velim MLA Benjamin Silva said that water shortage is there everywhere but the people of Velim constituency will be relieved of the problem as two water pipelines are being laid at a cost of Rs 4.5 crore which are expected to be commissioned by early July. He said that an independent water pipeline will be laid from Balli to Velim at a cost of Rs 80 lakh while another water pipeline is being laid from St Sebastian chapel, Chinchinim to Assolna at a cost of Rs 3.5 crore.
Silva further said that the work of laying the pipeline from Balli has been tendered while the work of laying the pipeline from St Sebastian chapel to Assolna has already commenced. He further stated that the work got delayed due to shortage of pipes which are supplied from Kolkata.
He said that the PWD every time played down the issue of water shortage saying only tale-end users are affected but never tried to find a solution to the problem and a lot of time was wasted in trying to find a solution to the problem however in future the residents will not face any problems even though they will have to put up with the hardships through the summer.
Sandy Fernandes, a resident of Baradi, which is the worst hit, informed, “We receive water during odd hours as early as 4 am till 5.30 am. We do not get water for the rest of the day until evening from 4 pm to 6 pm.� We have no option but to fetch water from a public tap which is at the foot of the hill. Even there is no water pressure and there is a lot of wastage.”
Another resident E Fernandes said, “We have to get up very early as the water comes at odd hours. If we miss the water we have to go without water.”
Similarly Maria Silva from Velim informed, “We have been using well water as the tap water supply is irregular. The well water is not fit for consumption but we have no option but to use it at harsh times.”
Source/Reference: Navhind Times, “Velim grapples with water scarcity“