Kolkata: The entire north and central Kolkata will go dry on Saturday since civic workers will plug a breach in the primary water supply line from Tallah tank. A section of the 60-inch diameter pipe developed a crack near RG Kar Medical College Hospital on Sunday, inundating the hospital premises and nearby localities like Nilmoni Mitra Row.
Though enough water still flowed beyond the breach to maintain supply to north Kolkata, south Kolkata and Salt Lake, KMC water supply department has decided to shut it down for 24 hours after the early morning supply on Saturday so that the breach can be repaired and water wastage is stopped. Some parts of Salt Lake may also get affected as a portion of the township’s water supply happens from Tallah via this pipeline.
KMC board of administrators chairman Firhad Hakim on Monday said the civic body would have to shut down the Tallah water tank on Saturday to repair the pipe. The other supplies later in the day and evening will not happen. Though the plan is to restore the supply by Sunday morning so that water can flow into taps in the morning, engineers said the Sunday morning supply could get affected if the repair is not completed during the night. Work on locating the breach and preparing the ground for seamless work with minimum time wastage will happen between Tuesday and Friday.
The 60-inch water pipe along with another pipeline of the same diameter forms the backbone of the water supply distribution system from Tallah water reservoir to entire north and central Kolkata. Sources in the KMC said though there was no immediate threat to water supply to nearly half of the city’s population, the civic body was still struggling to prevent water from gushing out of the pipeline that carries filtered water in high pressure because of its proximity to Tallah tank.
“We are trying to locate the actual point where the pipe got breached. Till then, we won’t stop supply from Tallah,” said a senior official. KMC sources said after the breach led to flooding of R G Kar premises, an SOS was sent to officials at Belgachhia drainage pumping station to deploy heavy duty pumps. “We are particularly anxious about the hospital premises. After officials at Belgachhia drainage pumping station started operating heavy duty pumps, the water level went down. We are still in the process of pumping out water from affected areas,” said a KMC water department official.
Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation will try to source additional water from New Town treatment plant.