July 7, 2021 5:40:36 am
With tubewells being the main source of water supply, Panchkula residents have been facing the issue of hard water for long. Seeking respite, several residents had urged the Haryana Shahari Vikas Pradhikaran (HSVP) to repair the 300-metre pipeline, to bring water to the district from Kaushalya Dam, that had sustained damages in 2018. Three years on, the residents still await its restoration.
Now, several residents have written to Haryana CM as well as local MLA Gian Chand Gupta, requesting them “to intervene personally and direct the concerned officers to take up this matter on priority, in a designated time frame, so that we get safe potable drinking water, which is the fundamental right of each citizen. It is also requested that the arrangement for mixing canal water with tubewell supply in an approved proportion be made so that both the waters can be used in optimum manner and a better water supply can be achieved.”
A resident of Sector 20, Avinash Malik recounts, “The problem of hard water has persisted in the city since the inception of Panchkula city in 1977, as water is fetched through tubewells. After a lot of efforts by the Haryana government, two schemes were prepared to supply potable drinking water. Accordingly, first scheme was made and executed in the form of Kaushalya dam built across the Ghaghar river near Pinjore to trap rainy water which used to overflow, and resulted in floods towards downstream. To augment water supply in Panchkula and supply potable water, a pipeline was laid from the dam upto Sector 1 of Panchkula, where a filtration plant and underground water tank was made at a huge amount in crores of rupees to mitigate this problem.”
The project involving supply of water through pipeline had worked well and a large number of sectors had found respite from the persistent issue of hard water. However, during the rainy season in 2018, a portion of about 300-meter of this under ground pipeline swept away due to road damage near Amravati and from then on the supply of raw water from Kaushalya dam stopped.
“This is apathy on the part of HSVP that this 300 meter damaged pipeline cannot be repaired. The issue keeps shuttling between HSVP and NHAI, remaining a huge concern for us. The matter can be easily sorted out by the commissioner of NHAI, principal secretaries of Town and Country Planning as well as B&R department or Public Health department of Haryana, but no head-through has been made even after three years,” says KK Jindal, another resident of trans-ghaggar sectors.
“Under these circumstances, water is being sourced by extracting underground water through tubewells and this extracted water is full of hardness and salts which are beyond permissible limits and they are causing health hazard, besides causing blockage in the pipelines that are used to supply this water. As such, it is pertinent to arrange potable water for all residents for a healthy living,” added Jindal.
As per officials of HSVP, while the pipeline lies under its jurisdiction, the road which too was destroyed at the time, lies with the NHAI, being one of the main reasons for the delay. “We are yet to receive permission from NHAI to rebuild this 2.5 feet pipeline as they themselves are involved in the reconstruction of road,” said Executive Engineer Amit Rathee of the HSVP.
In the past years, another project to bring canal water from Kajouli in Punjab to Mohali, Chandigarh and Panchkula was executed and pipeline was laid upto Sector 1 Panchkula waterworks. “Due to very unprofessional approach by Haryana government, the allotted water could not reach Panchkula and this quota of Panchkula is being utilised by Chandigarh and Mohali,” allege some residents of the city.
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