Gujarat stares at acute water crisis

Following a deficit monsoon, Gujarat is staring at an acute water crisis as the 204 dams and reservoirs that supply water for drinking and irrigation to various parts of the State are drying up even before the winter ends. Kutch, parts of Saurashtra and north Gujarat are likely to face water shortage in the coming months as water sources have almost dried up and they have to rely only on the Narmada project. “We will face water shortage because of the skewed monsoon. The State government has made elaborate arrangements to ensure that Narmada water is provided to the water-starved regions,” an official said. In Surendranagar district, water is supplied once a week, while in some places in Amreli, water is supplied once in 10 days. In parts of Saurashtra, water is supplied only once or twice a week. “As of now, 34 water bodies/dams/ reservoirs have completely dried up, while nearly 166 dams or water bodies are almost 70% dry,” the official said, adding that except south and central Gujarat, all other regions would face crisis from January. The government has declared 90 talukas in 16 districts as scarcity-hit and announced a relief package for farmers and cattle breeders.

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