A special train carrying water arrived in the northwestern neighbourhood of Villivakkam near Chennai, India on Friday afternoon from a railway station 217 km away, bringing relief to the desperate people of this city, which has been heavily affected by an unprecedented water crisis.
It is said that wayback in 2001 water was moved from Erode in trains to meet the demands of the city.
The train of hope: this is how the convoy of 50 tank wagons full of water arriving in Chennai is considered by the population. NDTV delivers reliable information across all platforms: TV, Internet and Mobile.
The train is expected to reach Villivakkam around 2.00 pm where it will be inaugurated by Tamil Nadu ministers, officials said.
The first consignment will be taken to a water treatment centre, and then distributed in trucks to different parts of the metropolis on Saturday. While one will be stationed near Jolarpet, another will be housed at the Avadi railway yard, according to sources.
While the Cholavaram (full capacity 1,081 mcft) and Redhills (full capacity 3,300 mcft) reservoirs and Chembarambakkam lake (full capacity 3,645 mcft) that supply water to Chennai have run dry, 16 mcft water is left in the Poondi reservoir (against a full capacity of 3,231 mcft), according to the Chennai Metro Water. It will take more than three hours to fill 2.5m litres of water into the wagons, officials said, adding it depends upon the availability of wagons, engines and tracks.
The Chennai Metro Water will be charged Rs 7.5 lakh for reach trip with the state government allotting Rs 65 crore for the project.
The government, however, has assured the residents that it would ensure a minimum supply of 525 million litres every day against the required 830 million litres a day till November when the monsoon would set in.
Authorities blame four parched drinking water reservoirs outside Chennai and inadequate monsoon a year ago for the water scarcity. For the water-starved city of Chennai, the promised 10 MLD of water, was a necessary intervention to battle the ongoing crisis.