Temples in the city are gearing up for the monsoon to store water in their tanks. For this purpose, both modern and ancient rainwater harvesting structures are being cleaned, desilted and even new ones are set up.
Temple tanks help recharge groundwater in the localities they are situated.
At Saidapet’s Karaneeswarar Temple, new channels that are wider than what was constructed earlier have been laid to the tank. “If the channels are wider, they will carry more water. When the tank dried in March-April, we cleaned up the bed. We made a small pit inside the tank and put the fish there. And now after two spells of rain, there is quite a bit of water and the fish are fine,” said a temple official.
Officials of the Chennai Corporation have been helping temple authorities since they maintain stormwater drains.
At the Kapaleeswarar Temple in Mylapore, at least four lines from the temple and surrounding streets have been cleaned, repaired and desilted. “One more line remains to be cleared. It was put on hold since sewage was entering it. We hope it would be remedied soon and the line cleared,” said a temple official.
At Triplicane, the residents have written to the Corporation requesting that a fresh stormwater drain be laid from Singarachari Street to Car Street and then to the Sri Parthasarathy Swamy temple’s tank.
Debris dumped in drain
“It is now defunct with silt and construction debris dumped across it at many points. We want a new line and hope that the work would be completed before monsoon,” said Srinivasa Young Men’s Association president T. A. Sampathkumar.
Also recently, a team of Central Industrial Security Force jawans of the Chennai Unit, as part of a nationwide Jal Sakthi Abhiyan campaign, cleared the space around the tank. Around 80 men under their Commandant Sathyabir Singh Aswal took part in the campaign. They also constructed several rainwater harvesting structures in their company area and installed taps that would help reduce water usage in their residential quarters.