Drinking water supply affected due to lack of coordination

Between National Highways Authority of India, Virudhunagar Municipality

VIRUDHUNAGAR: An innocuous mistake in failing to “effectively” coordinate with the National Highways Authority of India officials by the Virudhunagar municipal officials has affected drinking water supply to the local body for months together.

Adding to the woes: Drawing of water from Ondipuli water body remains suspended for months owing to technical fault. — Photo: S. James

Even as the local body is managing to supply only half of the required quantum of water to the town, it is unable to draw water from Ondipuli water body as the pipe line has been frequently bursting ever since it was re-laid by the NHAI officials over a year back.

The result: the town is losing around six lakh litres of water daily even though the erstwhile quarry site has plenty of water. “We have water for around 80-foot deep, but are not able to draw it every day,” a councillor said.

Municipal sources said that the officials of the local body failed to inform the NHAI authorities about the pipeline running along the Madurai-Tirunelveli highway for around 6 km from near the district sports stadium up to Inamreddiyapatti junction. “When the roadside was dug up for widening, the pipeline was broken. After much struggle, we made them re-lay the pipeline, which was not properly supervised by our officials,” an insider said.

“The pipeline was laid on the rocky bed without providing any sand cushion. Besides, the alignment is not proper leading to frequent bursts,” the Chairperson, K. Karthik, said. He said that the Collector, Sigy Thomas Vaidhyan, has promised to allocate Rs. 50 lakh for re-doing the work on receipt of Drought Relief Fund.

A councillor said that the Ondipuli water would have provided some relief as water was being supplied only once in 8 to 9 days. “We are not getting the due share even from the Tamiraparani combined drinking water scheme. The designed supply should be 47 lakh litres per day. But, till date it has not crossed 25 lakh litres on a single day. It is highly undependable as it sometimes fails for two or three days,” he said.

However, the Chairman said that the town was in a better position these days, when compared to supply of water once in 21 days. “We are trying to put up some water treatment plants to treat ground water drawn from borewells and wells so that residents get tastier water,” she said. The Virudhunagar Municipal Engineer said that air-valves were being fitted to prevent bursting of pipelines and he expected that continuous supply of water would be possible from February 15. Residents feel that the problem should be set right before the summer sets in.

S. Sundar From THE HINDU

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