Dharamsala, May 1
High temperatures and lack rains in the month of April have started taking toll on the water supply schemes of the IPH Department in Kangra and other lower areas of Himachal. The officials of the IPH sounded alert that in case there was no rain in the next fortnight they might have impose water cuts and people might have to face water pangs.
Contingency plans being readied
Over 500 water schemes based on surface water have been hit in the state. The situation was not alarming for the time being. The department was preparing contingency plans to overcome shortage in future. Engineer-in-Chief IPH
Sources here said that as per the report prepared by the IPH Department, 527 schemes, which account for about 5 per cent of total water schemes in the state, have been hit as the discharge from the sources in which they are set up have reduced considerably. A majority of the schemes that have been hit are located in lower areas of the state as Kangra, Una and Hamirpur districts. These schemes are those which are dependent on surface water after rivers and streams.
In Dharamsala region where most of the schemes are sourced on surface water including rivers and streams the officials are worried about the reduced discharge from sources.
The Engineer-in-Chief IPH Sanjeev Kaul, when contacted, admitted that over 500 water schemes based on surface water have been hit in the state due to reduced discharge in rivers and streams. He, however, added that the situation was not alarming for the time being. In case there were no rains in the state for another 20 days the situation could turn bad. The department was preparing contingency plans to overcome the drinking water shortage problem that some areas might face.
The sources here said that drinking water problem may arise in lower areas of Dharamsala such as Fatehpur and other areas around the Pong Dam. In these areas there was shortage of water in the scheme. Quality power was not available to pump water to the houses. The transformers that had been set up by IPH department for water schemes have been used under political influence to give power connections to locals. Power load was not strong enough to run heavy motors to pump water from underground schemes to overhead tanks and then to houses of people.
The sources here said that the IPH department has written to Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board many times that their transformers should not used for giving private power connections.
Low discharge in rivers and rivulets of Kangra district is also hitting irrigation. In Upper areas of Kangra district ranging from Dharamsala to Palampur the people are dependent on kuhls that carry stream waters to fields.