As an acute water shortage continues to grip Chennai, hitting normal life in the capital, the Madras High Court on Thursday pulled up the Tamil Nadu government asking what it has done to tackle the situation. It has asked the state government to file an affidavit by June 17 (Monday) on steps taken by it. The court also asked the state government on steps being taken on the status of desalination plants construction near East Coast Road and other areas.
Chennai continues to suffer from a severe water crisis over the last couple of months. In March this year, the state government had declared it as one of the 24 districts in Tamil Nadu that were declared drought-hit. Residents of the city are forced to purchase water from tankers at a time when reservoirs have dried up.
With parts of the state reeling under severe water crisis, the Tamil Nadu government requested the Centre for aid of Rs 5,000 crore on Tuesday for drought-relief work. It also included rain-water harvesting schemes, desilting of open wells, sinking of new borewells, renewing water supply schemes and funds for its desalination plants, a report by PTI said. While the city may receive rainfall from the southwest monsoon, it is dependent on northeast monsoon for its water.
Meanwhile, the Southern Railway has begun transporting water for its operational requirements, a New Indian Express report said. A special train on Sunday brought 4.5 lakh litres of water from was brought from Chengalpattu, for consumption as well as coach maintenance depot in Central Station and Basin Bridge.
In possibly the second time in five years, IT companies in the city have asked employees to work from home as the offices had run out of water. As per a report by Times Of India, around 5,000 employees of 12 companies have been asked not to come to the office and work from a place of their convenience till they figure out how to deal with the crisis. The last time such a directive was issued to employees was four years ago when private water tanker suppliers had gone on strike.