Pune citizens who hope that the monsoon will bring them relief from the continuing water cuts will have to keep looking to the skies a little longer. Officials in the district irrigation department have said that the city needs ten more days of satisfactory rainfall before the water crisis can see any improvement.
“The present amount of water stored in all the four dams, which are responsible for water supply to Pune, is 8.69 TMC (thousand million cubic feet). This amount can provide drinking water to the city for only five months. In this situation, it is not possible for civic administration to reduce the water cuts,” said Executive Engineer of Khadakwasla Irrigation Division, B B Lohar.
PMC Commissioner Vikas Deshmukh echoed the same concerns and said, “Although the city has received satisfactory rainfall in the past few days, the water cuts will remain imposed on citizens. We cannot roll back our decision as the administration has to meet with year-long water requirements.”
Since the civic body decided to impose a 12 per cent water cut on June 28, all 76 wards in the city have been receiving water once a day. Currently, the four storage dams, Khadakwasla, Varasgaon, Temghar and Panshet, have not even reached 30 per cent of their capacity. This is significantly lower than the 74.03 per cent recorded on July 23 last year. Lohar said however, that since July 13, the city has been receiving satisfactory rainfall, and if it continues for another ten days, the scarcity of water will be significantly reduced.