The following article is based on my own interpretation of the said events. Any material borrowed from published and unpublished sources has been appropriately referenced. I will bear the sole responsibility for anything that is found to have been copied or misappropriated or misrepresented in the following post.
Chetna Kohli, MBA 2015-17, Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur
The water levels in Mysuru have been at a significantly low level over a considerable period of time. The administration has the option to subsidize water and provide it as ration in view of the depleting water resources. However, the administration doesn’t plan on doing so.
The administartion was of the view that the much-talked-about scarcity and depletion were just superficial claims. After properly analysing the major reservoirs – Krishnaraja Sagar and Kabini reservoir, suffcient amount of water was available to satisfy the population’s needs. The available water could meet the demand for potable water. However, the supply for irrigation canals was suspended. The decision to stop water supply for irrigation was taken after a team comprising of the Regional commisioner and Deputy commissioner of Mysuru and Mandya had properly accessed the water availability there.
Officials from the Irrigation Deptartment pointed out that there won’t be any threat to drinking water availability as there was ample water available in the dam to take care of the potable water needs till June-July. However, the need of the hour is to use water judiciously and sparingly and prevent any execessive wastage.
Mysuru’s major drinking water supply comes from the Cauvery via KRS. The river is still the primary source of water for nearly 50 per cent of the city, but a couple of years ago, parts of the city started receiving water from the Kabini dam. Mysuru had faced a severe water crisis in the summer of 2013, as the KRS water level dropped to almost nill. Even places such as Bengaluru, Mandya and Ramanagaram faced a water crisis. When the water level dropped to such a huge extent, water was pumped from the riverbed using four heavy-duty emergency pumps to ensure supply.
The problem of water availability is not limited to Mysuru. Karnataka, Mumbai, Delhi and other highly populated states of India have begun to face similar problems. Water is a scarce resource and it should be carefully utilized. Due to dense habitation of these states, the scarcity has amplified. The sources of water and the availability of usable water cannot exceed a certain level. The authorities need to be proactive in spreading awareness and ensuring proper usage of the resource. This is just the beginning of a catastrophe that can occour if things are not taken under control soon enough.