Hyderabad faces water shortage despite heavy rains

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The Nagarjuna Sagar reservoir, which provides water to the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad, has reportedly hit an all-time low, despite heavy rainfall received in the state.

The Times of India reported that emergency water pumping motors were working round the clock to pump around 750 cusecs into the Akkampally reservoir, from where the water eventually reaches Hyderabad.

However, officials are facing hurdles.

Nagarjunasagar project chief engineer S Sunil told TOI, “There are many illegal pipelines laid by private individuals between Akkampally and Udaya Samudram. We have asked the district collector to remove all these connections which are sucking away most of the water even before it reaches Udaya Samudram.”

The Andhra-Telangana border has two major dams on the Krishna River. While the Srisailam dam, is situated upstream, the Nagarjuna Sagar dam is situated downstream.

The Nagarjuna Sagar has two canals. The left canal, and the right canal, both of which are under Telangana’s control, after orders of the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB).

The two states have been warring over the water ever since their bifurcation in 2014.

Srisailam dam’s full capacity is 885 feet, and its dead storage level is 800 feet. The full capacity of the Nagarjuna Sagar dam is 590 feet, while its dead storage level is 510 feet.

Since the Nagarjuna Sagar dam is already below dead storage level, the pressure of the water being released is low, and the state has installed pumps, to transport the water to its final destination.

The only hope for the dam, is if the Sri Sailam dam receives fresh inflows, and this may be happening soon, as the Almatti dam in Karnataka has started receiving fresh inflows.

“Since the Almatti is already full, the dam authorities will have to release the surplus to Narayanapur dam, from where the Krishna flows down to Jurala in Telangana state, and from there to Srisailam. We expect that by September 2 or 3, Srisailam will receive the first inflows from upstream,” Chief Engineer of Sri Sailam dam, C Narayana Reddy, told Deccan Chronicle.

Until then, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao and state Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao have ordered the Manjeera waters from Singur dam in Medak to be re-routed to Hyderabad, to meet the capital’s needs.

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