Water from Loktak to be supplied to public from March 21


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By Our Staff Reporter
IMPHAL, Mar 18 : The Thoubal Dam (Thoubal Multipurpose Project) would not dry up  even if it provides water to Chingkheiching Reservoir for three whole years without any rainfall, said a source in the Water Resources Department (WRD).
The officials of WRD continued that the initiative taken up by the Government to lift water from Thoubal Dam and Loktak Lake will be of much help in solving the water crisis gripping greater Imphal and its surrounding areas since the past few months.
Today, The Sangai Express had a conversation with the officials of WRD about the water scarcity problem in Imphal areas caused by absence of rainfall and subsequent drying up of many water bodies including rivers, ponds, lakes etc.
During the conversation, the officials of WRD conveyed that the process of lifting water from Loktak Lake through Loktak Lift Irrigation in a canal measuring around 18 Kms up to Malom would be completed by March 20.
They also said that PHED will soon be able to provide adequate water to people in Greater Imphal  and surrounding areas with water from Loktak Lake and Thoubal Dam as sources.
The water from Loktak Lake would be drawn upto Malom while Thoubal Dam has been supplying water to Chingkheiching Reserve, they said.
People will be able to get the water lifted from  Loktak Lake from March 21 onwards, they informed.
About the water level at Thoubal Dam, the officials maintained that the dam has a storage capacity of 125 million cubic metre and it currently stores about 75-80 million cubic metre of water.
The water level at the dam is about 869 metre above mean sea level (MSL).
The dam has sufficient water, they reassured.
They went on to state that providing water to Chingkheiching Reserve throughout the year would require about 10 to 12  million cubic meter of water , adding that the case could be otherwise if there is water leakage at some points.
If the water leakage is not severe then about 20 million cubic metres of water would be sufficient to provide water to Chingkheiching throughout the year, they added.
Continuing that Thoubal Dam would be able to provide water for over three years even if there is no rainfall, the officials of WRD maintained that  there is no shortage of water at Thoubal Dam and the water level will increase when  there is rainfall.
In the 2019 drought which hit many places in Manipur, the Thoubal Dam saved many paddy lands from being spoiled by providing water for irrigation, the officials recalled.
Though many rivers in Manipur have dried up, Thoubal River still runs with the help of Thoubal Dam, they added.
About the Loktak Lift Irrigation (LLI) which has been activated to provide water to Imphal areas, the officials conveyed that LLI has five canal networks   viz Imphal Main Canal, Imphal Low Canal, Imphal High Canal, Moirang  Low Canal and Moirang  High Canal.
These canal networks were set up to provide water for irrigation to paddy land measuring about 40,000 hectares in Imphal West and Bishnupur districts.
Saying that repair work is underway at the stretch of the canal at Heikrujam and Oinam to draw water from Loktak to Malom as soon as possible, they added that additional pipes would be used, if required.
They further stated that water from Loktak Lake would be released at Merakhong by Imphal Low Canal near Malom Oil Depot for supply to the public using tanker trucks.
They maintained that the capacity of the LLI pump which will be used to provide water to the public is 90 cubic metre per second.
On water level at Khuga Dam, the officials maintained that people in Churachandpur and surrounding areas have been facing some problem in getting water as one of the gates of the dam stopped functioning since 2010.
"But the Khuga Dam itself has sufficient water," they said.
They added that a tender process has begun to repair the non-functioning outlet gate of Khuga Dam  under Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Programme (DRIP).
About Singda Dam, the officials said that the storage capacity of the dam has been reduced by about 35 per cent due to several factors such as deforestation, presence of loose soil in the area.
Originally Singda Dam had a storage capacity of about 10 million cubic metre but now it has been reduced to about 6.5 million cubic metre, they informed.
Even if there is rainfall, Singda Dam will not be able to store water at its original capacity, the officials said.
The officials also said that they are preparing DRP to repair Singda Dam under Extension Renovation and Modernisation of Canal Scheme.
To revive Singda Dam, the WRD will initiate the Save Singda Campaign and  plant about 2 lakh saplings in the surrounding hill areas of the dam.
On barrages in Manipur, the WRD officials said that most barrages have stopped functioning owing to the absence of rainfall.
There is no water at Dolaithabi Barrage now as Iril River has dried up, they said and continued that the department is planning to set up a small water reserve at Yangnoi Village to avoid drying up of Iril River in dry season.
Continuing that the State is preparing to build a water body at Lamphelpat with funding from NDB (Rs 650 crore), the officials maintained that the project would be completed by 2025-2026.
The water body will have a depth of 7-8 metre in a land measuring 200 acres, they informed.
Access water from Nambul River in the monsoon would be released at the  proposed water body at Lamphelpat and kept as a reserve.