As Chennai faces one of the worst water crisis in recent times, Andhra Pradesh has stepped up to help Tamil Nadu in trying times. Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Saturday said that his Andhra counterpart YS Jaganmohan Reddy has agreed to release eight thousand million cubics (TMC) feet of water from Krishna river, PTI reported.
“Let me share the happy news that when the water reaches here, the people of Chennai will receive uninterrupted and safe drinking water,” Palaniswami told reporters and thanked Reddy for acceding to Tamil Nadu’s request.
State Ministers SP Velumani and D Jayakumar had met Reddy in Vijayawada and handed over a letter to him on behalf of Palaniswami requesting an immediate release of water from Krishna river through the Telugu Ganga canal to overcome the grave drinking water scarcity in the city.
On Friday, Reddy’s office had said he had directed the Water Resources Department authorities to ensure water release immediately. As per the agreement between Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, the former normally releases at least two TMC feet of water to meet Chennai’s drinking water needs, official sources had said in Vijayawada.
Chennai has been grappling with an acute water crisis over the past few months. The southern metropolis is facing a daily water deficit of at least 200 million litres, and the four reservoirs supplying to the city have run dry.
Chennai is among the regions in Tamil Nadu which is affected by drought, with a deficient monsoon in 2018, the state’s reservoirs are dried up. Four water sources around Chennai — Poondi, Chembarambakkam, Sholavaram and Red Hills — are also dry. Palaniswami had said that the drought and deficient monsoon had resulted in depletion of groundwater levels.
Meanwhile, lakhs of people are turning to water tank trucks as house and hotel taps run dry. It is to be noted that Chennai’s daily requirement itself was 525 million litres a day. Palaniswami had announced mitigating Chennai’s water woes by getting drinking water supplied from Jolarpettai with an allocation of Rs 65 crore.