Mangaluru, Jan 11, 2018: Is MCC really set to signal a summer free from water shortage? Mayor Kavitha Sanil has announced that Mangaluru City Corporation is all set to store water at 6 metres at its main reservoir at Thumbe starting today, January 11.
The capacity of the new vented dam is seven metre storage and the civic body at the height of water crisis last March had raised the water storage level to 5 metres. Water stored up to 6 metres will meet water needs of the city for 55 days.
Recalling the water crisis that gripped the city when she took over as mayor on March 9, Kavitha said the water level had dipped to an alarming 3.38 metres. "It was a major challenge for me in the initial days of my tenure," Kavitha said adding MCC subsequently with help from the district administration was able to raise the water level to 5 metres after getting upstream weirs to release water impounded by them for power production and for industrial use.
The move to raise the water level to six metres at Thumbe will result in near 60 acres of agricultural land in B.Muda, Sajipamunnur and Panemangaluru villages belonging to at least 35 individuals getting submerged, the mayor said. These include 19 individuals in Sajipamunnur, 16 in B.Muda and Panemangaluru, the mayor said, adding MCC for the time being will pay an annual ground rent of Rs 19 lakh to the property owners as process of land acquisition is on
"We require at least Rs 40 crore to acquire the above extent of land," the Mayor said, adding the civic body likewise had acquired land from 27 individuals when it decided to raise the water level to five-metres last year. "We have received Rs 7 crore grants from the state government which is being disbursed to land owners as compensation," she said, adding payment of compensation in a few cases has been delayed on account of technical reasons with the property khatas.
In a related development, DK DC Sasikanth Senthil S directed the MCC to raise the water level at Thumbe to six metres to mitigate water scarcity during the summer. MCC commissioner Mohammad Nazeer warned people living on the banks of the Nethravathi to leave the designated areas of submergence, once the civic body starts impounding water to raise the water level at the dam, and also tread cautiously while using any pathways or roads abutting the river banks.