Hyderabad: At a high-level meeting held here on Monday, the state government has directed the Singur Dam authorities not to use its water for agricultural purposes and to keep it in reserve to meet the drinking water needs of the capital city in the event of an emergency due to scanty inflows in Krishna River basin projects. Singur chief engineer K. Madhusudana Reddy confirmed this, “In view of the precarious water situation at the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam, the principal source for the city’s drinking water, we have been told to keep the water for emergencies.”
Before Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhara Rao’s decision two years ago not to use Manjeera (Singur) water for Hyderabad city and to make it available for agriculture in Singur, Ghanpur and Nizam Sagar command areas, the three pipelines from Manjeera barrage and Singur Dam used to supply 120 MGD (million gallons a day) to the city for several years. In lieu of Manjeera supplies the government has put in operation the Godavari drinking water supply scheme under which 172 MGD of water is being taken from the Yellampally Reservoir on the Godavari River. However, the main source for the city’s drinking water needs continues to be the Three Pipeline Scheme from the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam which supplies 270 MGD.
However, due to no inflows into the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam this year, the water level touched 500 ft on Monday which is 10 feet below the Minimum Drawdown Level of 510 Ft. But the Metro Water Board had completed dredging on the reservoir’s foreshore and it can draw water of up to 480 ft and even below. So far supplies for drinking water schemes have not been affected and authorities are able to pump 540 cusecs from the reservoir to Puttamgandi off take point so that they can draw 270 MGD for all the three phase pipeline scheme.