Mangaluru, May 08, 2019: Several areas in Mangaluru, DK and surroundings received a spell of rain on May 7, Tuesday. Kodagu district, which witnessed devastating floods last year, received heavy rain coupled with thunderstorm. There were reports of gusty winds accompanied with heavy rain lashing Suntikoppa, Chettalli, Siddapur, Maluru, Balekadu and Kodagarahalli, for about an hour.
Though sun shone brightly in the morning, clouds gathered by afternoon and skies opened up by around 4 in the noon. In Dakshina Kannada district rains gave some relief from scorching heat. The sky remained overcast throughout the day and in the evening it began raining catching many people in the city unawares.
Bondel, Padavinangadi and other parts of Mangaluru, Naravi, Aladangadi and Guruvayanakere experienced good showers. Parts of Hosadurga taluk in Chitradurga received light rains in the evening. The 15-minute shower brought down mercury a little bit, but is not expected to contribute to the water problems all over the region.
Water groundwater levels at a record low :
Despite receiving excess rainfall during the last monsoon, coastal Karnataka — where water scarcity was unheard of till recently — is facing severe water scarcity for the past two months with surface water bodies running dry and groundwater depleting to record-low levels.
Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts had received above normal rain in the last monsoon, while Uttara Kannada had faced a shortfall of 586.1 mm from the normal.
The coastal region received below normal rainfall post-monsoon (180.4 mm as against 263 mm) and during January-May (36.6 mm as against 50.3 mm).
Fresh water flow has stopped in all major rivers in the coast, including Netravathi, Phalguni, Swarna, Chakra, Varahi, Sharavathi, Aghanashini and Kali at present.
Groundwater level is 30-40 m deep in Mangaluru taluk and 20-30 m in Belthangady taluk while it is between 10-20 m in other taluks of the region as of March. In fact, Belthangady taluk on the foothills of the Western Ghats from where Netravathi flows down, used to be rich in groundwater.
With storage enough for about a fortnight at Thumbe vented dam across Netravathi, Mangaluru City Corporation has resorted to water rationing. The problem has worsened owing to the near absence of summer showers.