Delhi water crisis: Yamuna level at 57-year low, National Capital braces for shortage

Earlier this month, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal requested Haryana to release additional water on humanitarian grounds.

delhi water crisis
The board has advised the public to make judicious use of water on Thursday to manage the situation. (File/IE)

Water supply will be hit in several parts of Delhi on Thursday, the Delhi Jal Board has warned, with water levels in the Yamuna dropping to a 57-year low. The utility recorded the level in the Wazirabad pond at 666.8 ft, the lowest since 1965, against a normal of 674.5 ft due to Haryana releasing less water.

Haryana’s decision to release less water through the Carrier Line Canal and the Delhi Sub Branch has hit operations at the water treatment plants at Wazirabad and Chandrawal. The board warned that supply in north, central, west, and south Delhi and locations in New Delhi and Delhi Cantonment would remain hit till the situation improved.

“Due to less receipt of raw water in Delhi Sub Branch (DSB), Carrier Line Channel (CLC) and reduction of pond level i.e. 666.80 ft against the normal level of 674.50 ft in river Yamuna at Wazirabad, the water production has been affected adversely in Chandrawal and Wazirabad Water Treatment Plants (WTP),” the board said in a statement.

“Delhi Jal Board has done rationalisation of water supply in whole Delhi. Therefore, water supply will be available at low pressure in the morning and evening of Thursday and so on, till the sufficient water is released by Haryana in DSB, CLC and in the Yamuna.”

Earlier this month, the level at Wazirabad dropped to 667.6 ft. The utility’s water supply capacity was increased to 990 million gallons per day earlier this year. However, the board failed to touch the mark for over a month, mainly due to Haryana releasing less water, an official said.

On June 18, Delhi Jal Board wrote its ninth letter to Haryana since April 30, requesting to release water from the Somb, a Yamuna tributary. It also requested increasing the flow in the river and the canals. Earlier this month, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal requested Haryana to release additional water on humanitarian grounds. Delhi requires 1,380 million gallons per day — the board supplies around 990 million gallons per day.

Delhi also receives 253 million gallons per day from Uttar Pradesh through the Upper Ganga Canal. The remainder is drawn from ranney wells and tube wells across the city.

The board has advised the public to make judicious use of water on Thursday to manage the situation. It will also make water tankers available on demand.

With inputs from agencies

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