Gu­jarat to face acute wa­ter shortage as most dams are nearly empty

The Hindu - - FRONT PAGE - Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent

Fol­low­ing a deficit mon­soon, Gu­jarat is star­ing at an acute wa­ter cri­sis as the 204 dams and reser­voirs that sup­ply wa­ter for drink­ing and ir­ri­ga­tion to var­i­ous parts of the State are drying up even be­fore the winter ends.

Kutch, parts of Saurash­tra and north Gu­jarat are likely to face wa­ter shortage in the com­ing months as wa­ter sources have al­most dried up and they have to rely only on the Nar­mada project.

“We will face wa­ter shortage be­cause of the skewed mon­soon. The State gov­ern­ment has made elab­o­rate ar­range­ments to en­sure that Nar­mada wa­ter is pro­vided to the wa­ter-starved re­gions,” an of­fi­cial said.

In Suren­drana­gar dis­trict, wa­ter is sup­plied once a week, while in some places in Am­reli, wa­ter is sup­plied once in 10 days. In parts of Saurash­tra, wa­ter is sup­plied only once or twice a week.

“As of now, 34 wa­ter bod­ies/dams/ reser­voirs have com­pletely dried up, while nearly 166 dams or wa­ter bod­ies are al­most 70% dry,” the of­fi­cial said, adding that ex­cept south and cen­tral Gu­jarat, all other re­gions would face cri­sis from Jan­uary. The gov­ern­ment has de­clared 90 talukas in 16 dis­tricts as scarcity-hit and an­nounced a re­lief pack­age for farm­ers and cat­tle breed­ers.

VI­JAY SONEJI ■

Dry patch: In Kutch, parts of Saurash­tra and north Gu­jarat, lo­cal wa­ter sources have al­most dried up.

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