With Water Frozen In Pipes, Jawans Turn To Snow For Drinking Supply As Unprecedented Cold Engulfs Uttarakhand

An ITBP Himveer Observing Terrain [Photo Credit : ITBP Website]

Heavy snowfall in the upper Himalayan region has frozen the water in the pipelines forcing the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) jawans, posted at the China border in Uttarakhand, to melt the frozen water in the pipes to get water for their daily needs, Amar Ujala has reported.

The ITBP jawans are deployed along the China border in the Vyas valley of Dharchula block.

Generally, water in the pipelines in the area like Nabhidhang, Kalapani used to freeze around mid-December but this year the ITBP jawans had to face this problem earlier than they expected. The temperature in Nabhidhang has touched minus nine degree celsius, minus five in Kalapani and minus three in Ganji.

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ITBP has laid underground plastic pipelines in order to supply water to the border posts but due to excessive cold, the water in the pipeline has started to freeze.

The jawans, in order to melt the frozen water in the pipeline, had to remove the plastic pipes laid under ground and keep them in the sun at 10 am in the morning. The heat from the sunlight melts the water which is being used to fill the water tank. However, this only ensures water supply for two to three hours.

According to the ITBP sources quoted by the paper, in the preceding years, the water in the pipeline used to freeze only after 15 December but this year due to excessive cold in the higher Himalayan regions, the phenomenon is being witnessed in October itself. Although, there is no shortage of ration for the jawans at the border post as the winter ration was already supplied by the helicopters.

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