Tamil Nadu government plans to bring in water from Vellore by rail wagons to Chennai, as the city is facing one of its worst summers, the Times of India reports. Chennai faced a familiar situation from 2001 when water was brought in from Neyveli by trucks and Erode from trains.
Officials said that they are holding talks with the Southern Railway to bring 25 million litres per day (MLD) to Chennai, which is less than five per cent of what metro water supplies currently. All four drinking water reservoirs supplying to the city have dried up.
“The plan is to transport treated water from Jolarpet in Vellore to Villivakkam in Chennai. It is estimated to cost Rs 154.3 crore towards hiring charges for the wagons and pumping, treatment and distribution,” an official said.
Fifty wagons, each carrying 50,000 litres per trip (2.5 million litres), will be employed. Officials are hoping to arrange 10 trips a day. Currently, Metrowater claims the supply 525 MLD, 300 MLD lesser than last summer.
The board further reduced supply to 500 MLD from June third week to maintain supplies till November, if the situation did not improve after the southwest rains hit the city.
The Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage Board (TWAD) identified Vellore as possible diversion of surplus water to Chennai after learning that the town has a surplus of around 30 MLD.
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