TO SUPPLY drinking water to Gondal and Jetpur talukas of Rajkot district, the state government has decided to pump 700 million cubic feet (mcft) water into Bhadar-I dam through pipeline network of Saurashtra Naramada Avataran Irrigation Yojana (SAUNI).
When water reaches Bhadar dam, it will be an important milestone for SAUNI project as it will mark the linking of Narmada dam with the second biggest reservoir of Saurashtra.
“The state government has given its approval to pump 700 mcft water into Bhadar dam to meet drinking water requirements of Gondal and Jetpur towns as well as dozens of villages in these talukas. We have been pumping water towards Bhadar dam since May 8 and water has already reached Gondal town. In fact the Veri Talav started overflowing at around 8 pm Thursday. The water will now flow towards Bhadar dam, filling up a few other check dams en route,” an officer of state irrigation department said, adding that they have increased the flow of water towards Bhadar dam after sanctioned amount was pumped into Aji and Nyari dams near Rajkot by using the same pipeline.
The state government launched the Rs 1,600 crore SAUNI project in 2012. The project, which is expected to augment irrigation facilities for around three lakh hectares and provide drinking water to the Saurashtra region, is scheduled to be completed by December this year. The pipeline network has been divided into four main trunk lines called link canals. Bhadar dam is to be connected with the Narmada by Link-III of SAUNI.
Bhadar dams supplies water to Rajkot city, Gondal and Jetpur towns as well as dozens of villages. Officers said that people of Gondal town have already started getting Narmada water from Veri Talav across Gondali river. “We have already pumped 150 mcft water into Veri Talav and Gondal municipality is drawing two million litres of water from the check dam every day to supply it to the residents of the town,” said an officer.
Incidentally, Saurashtra, Kuth and north Gujarat regions of the state are witnessing drought.