As temperature increases in Hyderabad, so do water woes and demand for tankers

HMWS&SB Manikonda division general manager said there has been a 20 percent increase in demand for tankers this February compared to 2023.

BySumavarsha Kandula

Published Feb 21, 2024 | 2:00 PMUpdatedFeb 21, 2024 | 2:21 PM

HMWSSB water tanker

The unusual rise in temperature in Hyderabad, which could be induced by the Pacific weather event El Niño, has resulted in water woes in the city as early as February.

The shortage of water for domestic and drinking purposes is common in the city during the summer season. However, it usually arises from mid-March.

With the temperatures already crossing 35 degrees Celsius and the subsequent depletion in groundwater levels, the woes arrived early this year by mid-February.

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‘No issues in supply’

Officials attribute the water scarcity to the already depleted groundwater levels, less rainfall, and non-functional borewells.

Following the scarcity, residents are already opting for water tankers, with the maximum demand coming from the Gachibowli, Jubilee Hills, and Banjara Hills neighbourhoods.

Telangana Chief Minister A Revanth Reddy had directed the officials concerned in January to use the newly constructed Mallannasagar, Kondapochamma Sagar, and Ranganayaka Sagar reservoirs to meet the drinking water needs of the state to prevent shortage during the summer months.

A senior official at the HMWS&SB (Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board), speaking to South First, said that the rise in tankers was directly linked to groundwater depletion.

“The demand is high this February. We generally see this kind of demand in March,” he said, and added: “But as of now, there is no issue in the supply, we can meet the rising demands.”

Despite the official’s claim of meeting the demands, there have been reports of people not being able to get the water tankers on time.

Water board tankers need to be booked a day in advance, and usually takes 24-48 hours for the water board to complete the booking.

However, if any sudden demand arises, the residents are forced to pay double or triple the normal price, said sources.

While water board tankers cost ₹500 for a 5,000-litre of water, a private water tanker costs about ₹1,000-1,200 for the same.

Also Read: CM directs officials to prepare action plan to address drinking water shortage in summer

Increased demand in West and central Hyderabad

Speaking to South First, G Ravinder Reddy, HMWS&SB general manager for the Manikonda division said: “There has been a 20 percent increase in demand for tankers this February, compared to February 2023.”

“This is due to groundwater depletion. As I speak, we are having a meeting to tackle the increasing demand for water tankers,” he added,

A resident of the Sri Nagar colony shared that the need for water tankers in February was unheard of in their locality till last year.

“But this year, not only the need has risen early but we are also anticipating an increase in the number of tankers needed,” he said.

While C Chandrashekar and P Santosh Kumar, HMWS&SB general managers of the Rajendranagar and Uppal divisions respectively, said that they had not seen an increased demand for water tankers yet.

People were also of the opinion that the increased demand in the Gachibowli area in specific and west Hyderabad in general could also be attributed to the presence of a higher number of high-rise residential buildings and commercial spaces.

“Manikonda has always been prone to water shortage, due to the multiple high-rise buildings, and lack of rainwater harvest mechanisms in many homes. But, needing tankers in February is for the first time over the 10 years I lived here,” Deepak, a resident of the area opined.

He further added: “As this area is closer to the Raidurgam, where many IT employees reside. It’s a rapidly developing area, and water shortage is going to increase.”