Srinagar, Feb 16: Over two lakh people continue to suffer in silence as the government has failed to fix the Malshahi Bagh water canal breach even after two months have passed.
Malshai Bagh canal, which is the main source of water to various treatment plants including Rangil, Alesteng, Hadoora, Shuhama, and Bakoora, caters to over two lakh population in the Srinagar outskirts. The canal developed a breach in the first week of December.
Last month, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan had directed concerned engineers to expedite restoration work on Malshahi- Bagh canal before February 15.
An official of the Public Health Engineer Department (PHE) said that the department had bypassed the breach portion, but the water flow is not good enough to cater to a huge population.
“We have laid four pipes to bypass the breach. However, those are not able to supply sufficient water,” he said.
The areas facing water shortage include Elahi Bagh, Gulab Bagh, Soura, Anchar, Nowshera, Lal Bazar, Alasteng, Shuhama, Habak, Zukra, Batpora, Hazratbal, Kashmir University, National Institute of Technology (NIT), Saderbal, Saida Kadal and many areas of the old city.
“For the last two months, we are facing acute water supply shortage. We have to take turns to store water in tanks and use it for daily chores,” said Parveena Akhtar, a resident of Elahi Bagh.
Chief Engineer Irrigation and Flood Control Department MM Shahnawaz told The Kashmir Monitor that they have consulted designers from NIT for new design.
“We have to frame a new proposal for permanent restoration, which will take time. Approximately it will take at least more than one month. But PHE department is going to lay another 1200 mm pipe to meet the requirement,” he said.