With scant rainfall in the catchment areas of the seven lakes that supply drinking water to the city, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has announced a 20 per cent cut in water supply from August 5.
While the BMC had decided to impose water cuts from August 1, the decision was deferred due to Eid al-Adha, officials said.
“The supply cut is imposed so that the water stock lasts in the city for the remaining part of the year. We are monitoring the situation/water stock in the lakes. We can review the decision once the water stock rises,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner (Projects), P Velrasu, who is also the in-charge of the Hydraulics department.
The city requires 4,200 million litres of water daily (MLD) of which the BMC supplies 3,800 MLD. On Friday, the total water stock in the seven lakes was recorded at 4.99 lakh million litres, which is 34.49 per cent of the full capacity of the reservoirs. Last year, the total water stock was recorded at 85.68 per cent on the same day.
The seven lakes should have a cumulative 14.5 lakh million litres stock by October 1 for the city to go without a water cut for the rest of the year, officials said.
Mumbai draws water from Bhatsa, Middle Vaitarna, Upper Vaitarna, Tansa and Modak Sagar, which are in Thane and Nashik districts. Though the city received heavy showers in July, rainfall in the catchment areas of these five lakes was very poor. Of the two lakes located within city limits in the Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Tulsi lake had overflowed on July 28. At least three lakes had started to overflow by July 30 last year, officials said.
Bhatsa lake, a major supplier of water to the city, is at 38.38 per cent (2,77,351 million litres) of its capacity. The lake also supplies water to neighbouring Thane and Bhiwandi. In the 24 hours, ending at 6 am Friday, Bhatsa lake received 2 mm of rain. Between June 1 and July 31, it has received a total of 1,082 mm rain.
In November 2018, BMC had ordered 10 per cent cut in water supply volume and another 15 per cent cut in supply timings when the total stock in the seven lakes stood at 76 per cent of the total capacity. The civic body had then announced that the cut would remain in place till monsoon next year. After a good rain, the cut was revoked in July 2019.
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