Delhi water crisis: Minister writes to Rajnath, Parrikar

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New Delhi, Feb 22 (IANS) Delhi’s water crisis is expected to ease partially after the army on Monday secured the Munak canal in Haryana which was vandalised by Jat protesters agitating for reservation.

“Twenty-five percent water is estimated to reach Delhi by evening. The water would be supplied partially as it will take 7-10 days more to completely restore the situation,” Delhi’s Water Minister Kapil Mishra told reporters after a meeting with Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.

Concerned over the water crisis, Mishra wrote letters to union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to ensure safety of the Munak canal, and also sought deployment of army engineers to carry out repair work at the canal.

In his letter to the home minister, Mishra wrote: “The damage caused to the canal appears to be enormous and all out efforts are required to repair the damage at the earliest.

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“The staff deployed for repair of the damaged portion of the canal need to be provided adequate security. I request (you) that army may continue to be deployed at the canal where repair is required to be carried out, till the work is completed,” he wrote.

Mishra urged the defence minister to deploy army engineers for repair work.

“The Indian Army with its resources and dedicated team of engineers is known for carrying out most difficult tasks in shortest possible time.

“Considering the situation in Delhi, it is requested that appropriate directions may be given for accomplishing this huge task or repair of the Munak canal by the Indian Army,” he said in his letter to Parrikar.

Earlier on Monday, Mishra said the crisis was not over.

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“The problem is not over yet… We must consume water very carefully,” he said.

Mishra said about 400 cusecs of water would reach Delhi later on Monday and that “the Delhi Jal Board plants are continuously being monitored”.

Mishra in the evening visited the Wazirabad water treatment plant, which was successfully restarted by DJB teams.

“It (plant) will be functioning at 50 percent capacity by (Monday) night. DJB will start operating the Chandrawal and Okhla plants soon,” Mishra said.

As per existing agreements, Haryana supplies 580 MGD (1,100 cusecs) of water to Delhi from the Munak canal and other sources.

The Munak canal in Haryana, which supplies water to many parts of Delhi, had to be shut down after it was vandalised by a section of demonstrators demanding reservations in government jobs and educational institutions for the Jat community in the state.

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