Velacheri residents reeling under water scarcity

Chennai: Shortage of water has become a burning problem in Velacheri, Chennai, to the extent that families are moving out. Residents say that even fights are breaking out between neighbours over the issue. “Tenants are moving out, and the number of ‘To Let’ boards are increasing,” said a resident of Adambakkam.

The lack of drinking water is the main cause of concern. It is said that Metrowater supply to the neighbourhood has been reduced in the past few months leaving residents in the lurch.

“Earlier, we could book for water without reservations. Now the mandate is to book every week, and private lorries taking advantage of it have priced one load at Rs 1,800,” the resident said.

When News Today contacted a private lorry water supplier, he said, “The government is restricting us from taking water from several places. There is a lot of demand. We already have regular customers on a yearly basis, and we cannot take any more orders from new customers due to such restrictions.” This supplier charges Rs 2,500 for 12,000 liters of water.

Ananthi Nirmal of Vinayakapuram said, “For the last three to four months, Metrowater supply has become erratic. Even private lorries take 10-15 days to supply. The population of the neighbourhood has gone up, and we have been sending messages to the civic body about this.”

But what puzzles the residents is that some areas are provided with water and some are not. Relationships between neighbours are getting strained because of water shortage, Ananthi added. Kumararaja of Annai Indira Nagar Residents’ Welfare Association said, “Delivery by the Metrowater department takes 20 days from the date of booking. Hospitals, old-age homes, private offices, ladies hostels and flats suffer because of this.”

Naomi N