AAP Vs. BJP and the water woes in Delhi

AAP Vs. BJP and the water woes in Delhi

DJB Chairman Saurabh Bhardwaj inspecting the Yamuna WTP on Friday.

Does the BJP hold the key to national capital’s water crisis?

New Delhi, June 12 (Delhi Crown): As Mercury continues to rise the national capital is facing paucity of drinking water these days. But the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) continue to spar, blaming each other for the water woes Delhites suffer from.

While Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Delhi Jal Board (DJB) chairman and MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj have asked the BJP-led Haryana government to release Delhi’s share of water in the Yamuna, the Delhi unit of the BJP misses no chance to push the Kejriwal govt. against the wall holding it responsible for potable water scarcity.

President of BJP’s Delhi unit Adesh Gupta on Saturday squarely blamed the Delhi CM for the problem, saying “Kejriwal is only busy in political tourism and expansion of his party”.

“It is Kejriwal’s biggest failure that he could not even arrange water in these seven years. Delhi now needs 1400 MGD water, but only 900 MGD is being supplied,” said Gupta while inaugurating the two-day state executive of the Delhi BJP.

Last week Bharadwaj claimed that Haryana had “stopped” releasing water from the Tajewala Barrage in Yamuna Nagar district, which had resulted in a reduction in water supply in Delhi by around 100 million gallons a day.

In the present political scenario, the question that hits one’s mind is – Does the BJP hold the key to resolve Delhi’s water crisis, by simply asking the (BJP-led) Khattar govt. in Haryana to release/supply more water for Delhi?

“The Yamuna runs eight feet deep in Delhi and the water level has already reduced by 7.5 feet. The river has become dry. The drinking water problem in Delhi has aggravated over the last two days,” said Bhardwaj.

The DJB chairman further stated – “As a contingency measure, we have created depressions in the river bed to collect a sufficient quantity of water which is being lifted with the help of temporary floating pumps. The situation cannot improve until Haryana releases water in the river.”

According to the DJB, the water level in the Wazirabad pond stands at 667 feet as against the normal of 674.5 feet.

The Wazirabad, Chandrawal and Okhla water treatment plants (WTPs) lift water from the Wazirabad pond, clean it and supply to northeast Delhi, west Delhi, north Delhi, central Delhi, south Delhi, including Delhi Cantonment, and New Delhi Municipal Council areas.

The Chandrawal, Wazirabad and Okhla WTPs have a capacity of 90 MGD, 135 MGD and 20 MGD, respectively.

Delhi requires around 1,200 MGD of water, while the DJB supplies around 1,000 MGD.

According to Bhardwaj, water production had dropped to below-900 MGD.

On Thursday the DJB had written a letter to the Haryana Irrigation Department asking it to release water from the Somb river, a tributary of the Yamuna. This was the fifth time this summer season when the Delhi govt. wrote a similar letter to the Haryana government.

Haryana supplies a total of 610 million gallons of water a day to Delhi through two canals — Carrier Lined Canal (CLC) and Delhi Sub Branch (DSB) — and the Yamuna. The CLC and the DSB are supplied water from Hathni Kund via Munak canal and the Bhakra Beas Management Board.

Besides, Delhi receives 253 MGD from Uttar Pradesh through the Upper Ganga Canal, and 90 MGD is drawn from wells and tube wells installed across the city.

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