No Krishna water for city before March

The city will get only a fourth of the Krishna water due to it in the first quarter, and that too only in March.

The city, which is starved of water sources, has been awaiting Krishna water since January. Discharge of water from the Kandaleru reservoir in Andhra Pradesh was one of the issues discussed at the first meeting of the Krishna River Management Board held earlier this week in Hyderabad.

Representatives of five States — Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka — participated in the meeting with the Central Water Commission to discuss water-sharing and allocation of water to Tamil Nadu.

Sources in the Water Resources Department (WRD) said the A.P. authorities had suspended water release to cater to the irrigation needs in their State. The Kandaleru reservoir has 12,270 million cubic feet of water (mcft) against its capacity of 68,000 mcft.

Low expectations

Chennai is supposed to receive 4,000 mcft between January and April as per the inter-State agreement under the Krishna water supply project. The WRD expects to receive around 1,000 mcft.

As Andhra Pradesh is looking to shore up resources, water supply to Chennai may be delayed, sources said. It was indicated at the meeting that the water may be released only after the harvest season is over, sources added. Modalities on water sharing between the States and release of water due to Tamil Nadu were discussed at the meeting. According to the project, the four other States have to jointly release 15,000 mcft to Tamil Nadu.

Sources said the means to reduce evaporation loss during transmission of water was also discussed. “The States agreed to provide water in principle. We have to work out the ways to share water and the Board will monitor the quantum provided,” said an official. The Board will meet twice a year on the Krishna water-sharing issue.

Meanwhile, Chennai will have to manage with the available resources in reservoirs until Krishna water is realised in the Poondi lake. The storage in reservoirs, including Veeranam tank, will last another two months. Residents of areas such as Mogappair and Purasawalkam are already complaining of erratic water supply.

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