Durgapur News Service, 28 November 2017: After remaining virtually water-less for four consecutive days, Durgapur ultimately managed to tide over the adverse situation today.
On Monday at about 12 noon, an unused floating gate which was kept in front of the lock gate number 13 was brought in front of the repair lock gate number 01 and installed there so as to decrease the lateral pressure on this recently refurbished lock gate. The new gate was installed with the assistance of a high-capacity crane. The gate was made to float in water before being brought up to lock gate number 1 and installed at the right channel.
The broken sluice gate number 1 of the Durgapur Barrage was repaired on Sunday but the supply of drinking water to households could not be restored as the water level in the upper catchment area is yet to reach the desired level.
Officials in the irrigation department said yesterday afternoon that the water level at the barrage should be at least 12 feet to supplied to the households. The level has currently reached 7 feet.
“We cannot release water to the feeder channels leading to the treatment plants in the town as we need at least 12 feet of water in the barrage’s upper catchment area. We are expecting the water level to reach the desired level by tonight. Only then can we send it to the treatment plants,” said an irrigation department official.
Irrigation minister Rajib Banerjee, who inspected the barrage on Sunday, said the state government would take the initiative to repair the rusted sluice gates, which have never been overhauled since the barrage was handed over the government by the DVC in 1965.
Meanwhile, Durgapur MLA of CPI(M), Santosh Debroy revealed that in 2016, after he became the member of the state legislative assembly, he in a written letter addressed to the minister in-charge of the Water Resources Investigation and Development raised concern about the condition of the Durgapur Barrage as a whole and its decreasing water holding capacity in particular.
The Durgapur Projects Limited, which supplies around 1.8 crore gallons of water a day to various industries, including its own power plant, has failed to do so since Saturday. Most of the factories, including the state-owned Durgapur Chemicals Ltd, have stopped production in the absence of adequate water.
The Durgapur Municipal Corporation has been supplying drinking water in 65 tankers brought from the Asansol Municipal Corporation, Bankura municipality and Eastern Coalfields Ltd.
From yesterday evening Durgapur Steel Plant water works started supplying water in some areas for limited time. By today noon, almost the entire Steel Township received water.