Punjab News Express/Y.S. RANA
CHANDIGARH : The lovers of Sukhna Lake have reason to cheer up! They can now raise a toast to its long life for, the low water flow to the lake which has been soaking it up for years, no more poses a threat to this water mirror of Chandigarh. Out to put a stop to half-heartedly initiatives of the Administration, the Punjab and Haryana High court stepped in to save the lake.
Tube wells will supply water to the lake 21 hours in day from January 15. For this purpose, seven tube wells have been identified and the Administration and the municipal corporation geared up in laying pipe line to meet the deadline. But there few those have reservations on the success of this initiative. It is estimated that 60 lakh liters of water will be required to maintain the level of lake daily but on the other these tube wells at present have `capacity of 18.06 lakh liters daily.
Reaching out Dr Ritesh Arya, an international renowned geologist and Limca Book Record holder on telephone was optimistic and said,” The concept of recharging the Man Made Sukhna lake by exploring and tapping groundwater resources is a very innovative idea and sustainable one too. The interesting thing with this groundwater fueling the Water requirement of the lake is that the entire process of silting the lake can be entirely taken care of if the new channel is constructed to divert the silt especially in rainy reason. The number of borewells to be drilled to meet the water requirement should be 2-4 borewells and depth of the borewells should be associated with the paleo-channels which is below the ground. Number can be increased depending on the discharge of the water available to fill the lake especially in summers. ”
He says that groundwater is plenty in Chandigarh and can solve the water problem of the City beautiful on sustainable basis. If decentralization of water supply scheme is done and every sector should haves 4-8 bore wells drilled in presence of hydrogeologist with proper sampling and groundwater monitoring done then 24x7 water can be obtained and costly water which involved transportation of water can be minimized, he said.
On the other data complied by the Central Groundwater Board of the Ministry of Water Resources shows that depletion in water level is more (10-12 meters) in northern sectors. According to the report, the worst hit sectors include 27, 10, 12, 21 and 31 where the water level has dropped by as much as 5-15 meters over the past seven years.
Old-timers say that when city was planned, sufficient availability of sub-soil water was considered adequate to meet water needs. Now there is much gap between water demand and supply. The Bhakra Main Line was commissioner in 1983 and Chandigarh gets 29 cusecs of water; Mohali 5 cusecs; Panchkula 3 cusecs and Chandimandir Contonment 2 cusecs.
As per municipal corporation record the city’s daily demand for water stands at 493 million liters per day (MLD) whereas available supply is around 363 MLD. Major water requirement is met through BML approximately 272 MLD and by 2031 city will need around 800 million liter of water per day. In such a scenario, how much viable is this initiative? EOM