KOCHI: The water scarcity in the Bolgatty Island has reached critical levels. Since the household taps remain dry from the past two months, people here have to depend on the last remaining holes and bores to get drinking water.
Walk through the Panchayat and one would find small puddles of water, and coming out from it are numerous pipes and hoses. Some of the residents said that the small pipes and hoses are laid by the people to fetch some drinking water from the huge pipeline that carries water to the nearby Vypeen Island.
The pipelines laid down as part of the HUDCO water project passes right through this panchayat. “When we were struck by water scarcity this year, we had no option but to get water some way or the other. So in these areas whenever one finds water logging from these from the pipelines, we clear it up and extract water from it,” said a resident of Mulavukad.
But everyone does not have such luxurious leakages. Also wells and borewells are hardly an option as the area suffers from ground water salinity. The public taps are the only resource. But unfortunately the taps too cannot be relied on as water comes like a thin strand of thread. “The lodges and the more well-off families in the area depend on private water tankers. But not everyone can opt for it on a daily basis. And during weddings or other functions everybody has to depend on the private tankers,” said N P Xavier, resident of Mulavukad.
The officials from the Kerala Water Authority (KWA) said that the water scarcity is owing to the leakage in the underwater pipeline.
“Repairing the pipeline is a complex job and there aren’t many who can do it. We have also sent requests to extend the HUDCO connection to Mulavukad,” said C I Mary, Executive Engineer of KWA.
But many air different views. “The leakage might have made the scarcity acute but that is not the sole reason. The leakage issue cropped up only a few weeks back but the water scarcity began much earlier, by April itself. This water shortage began immediately after the KWA laid down a new pipe from our pump house to the High Court. Hence our water got diverted and we started facing problems,” said V S Askar, member of the Mulavukad Panchayat.
The KWA, however, denied the allegation saying that the pipeline was laid years back and not this year.