Water woes in Morni area: Panchkula District Administration to rejuvenate, repair bawris : The Tribune India

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Water woes in Morni area: Panchkula District Administration to rejuvenate, repair bawris

Water woes in Morni area: Panchkula District Administration to rejuvenate, repair bawris

Mandhna village Sarpanch Panchpal Sharma shows a bawri at his village in Morni Block in Panchkula district on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Ravi Kumar



Tribune News Service

Ravneet Singh

Panchkula, June 12

Despite the availability of natural water running through its villages, residents of various villages in Morni hills face water scarcity during the summers every year. While the ground water in areas with provisions for submersible pumps is drying, the District Administration has now decided to go the traditional way by rejuvenating and revamping forgotten bawris (small village-based water reservoirs) to provide for the needs of residents.

Villages, especially those in Morni’s upper reaches, face water scarcity during peak summer. The president of the Sarpanch Association of Morni Block, Panchpal Sharma, whose area has the provision of groundwater supplied by the Public Health Department, said residents in his area have not received potable water for about a week. “It might be an issue with the electric motor of the submersible pump, or the ground water level in the area has decreased altogether. The residents here have not received potable water in a week. Our areas face a scarcity of drinking water every year during the summer. With time, people have stopped using water from the bawris, which evaporates into the atmosphere or flows into the Ghaggar.”

He added, “The bawris are traditional resources of potable water in Morni and Pinjore. Water that gradually flows downwards from the hills is stored by constructing bawris in every village to be used for drinking purposes, irrigation and livestock. People are dependent on the supply of groundwater, which is pumped to their houses with the help of submersible pumps. At other places, the water is pumped from water tanks established on the Ghaggar banks.”

Residents said the bawris have been a means of providing water in the region for a long time. The sarpanch of Bhudhi village in Bhoj Dharti of Morni Hills, Jawala Singh, said some bawris may be 100 to 150 years old. “The natural water collected in these bawris is clean. Old people in villages use this water for drinking as it is considered clean and full of minerals.”

Panchkula CEO Zila Parishad Gagandeep Singh said Deputy Commissioner Dr Yash Garg held a meeting with officials of the department. They have come to the conclusion that they need to rejuvenate the bawris. The DC said some reservoirs need repair, adding that they would also set up tanks to increase water storage in these areas. DC Garg said the works would be carried out with the help of MGNREGA workers of the Rural Development Department and through the Assistant Soil Conservation Officer. He said, “We are preparing the estimates for the project and the work will begin soon. With rejuvenation, the bawris are expected to fulfil the needs of villagers.”

Department SDO Dharamveer Singh said they have identified villages that need construction and repair work for water storage. He said about 100 bawris would be repaired, over 39 would be made of concrete, and 67 water tanks would be constructed. He said, “The department will begin the repair work at the earliest, and the new construction will begin after the monsoon."

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