Mangaluru, Feb 13, 2017: Inflow in the Netravathi to the Thumbe vented dam, which supplies drinking water to the city, has dropped by 50% in a month, which might force the Mangaluru City Corporation to supply water once in two days from next month as a precaution to manage water in the next three summer months. To manage water during summer, MCC might have to supply water once in two days soon.
“The inflow to the dam has dropped from about 12 cusecs (cubic feet per second) in the first week of January to about 5 cusecs last week,” K.S. Linge Gowda, Executive Engineer (Water Supply) at the corporation, has told media. He said that the water-level at the dam now stood at 5m. Whereas the vented dam of AMR Power Private Ltd. at Shambhoor on the upstream of Thumbe had water in store at about 6m level.
Gowda said that no decision has been taken on supplying water on alternative days to the city now. If the inflow stopped completely, then the civic body might be forced to go for it.
Meanwhile, there are 10 vented dams of hydel power projects of different companies built across the Netravathi, the Kumaradhara and their tributaries on the upstream of Thumbe dam. In addition, a vented dam across the Kumaradhara at Uppinangady supplied drinking water to Puttur and MRPL (Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd) had its pumping station just on the upstream of Shambhoor vented dam.
With the city facing acute water scarcity during the last summer, hostels of educational institutions, including that of medical colleges, had been forced to send some students home and some industries had been forced to stop production temporarily. The corporation had to supply water in tankers to many areas. The illegal tapping of water from the two main supply lines between Thumbe and Padil has remained unaddressed for more than a decade. The corporation engineers had disconnected seven such new connections three months ago (in November, 2016).
Some engineers claim that of 160 MLD of water being pumped from Thumbe in the two lines at least 40 MLD of water was lost due to theft and transmission loss. The two lines had at least 30 illegal connections now.