The Tungabhadra Dam at Hospet in Karnataka, which serves the drinking water and irrigation water needs of undivided Anantapur and Kurnool districts, received a record quantum of inflows during May this year.
The current water storage in the reservoir stands at 37.43 tmcft, while in 2021 by this time the reservoir had only 8.53 tmcft and the 10-year average is 7.55 tmcft. Such inflows were never witnessed in the past three decades in the month of May.
Officials in the Irrigation Department said that during the past one week, there were heavy inflows reaching up to 70,000 cusecs on some days due to heavy rains in Karnataka. The inflows, however, came down to 2,700 cusecs as of Monday evening. With a normal monsoon predicted, the rains are expected in the next fortnight and further inflows are expected.
The total water yield during the Water Year coming to an end on Tuesday was 418.45 tmcft at the dam, while it had received only 304.26 tmcft and the 10-year average was only 272.92 tmcft. The dam with a 1,633 feet water level has a holding capacity of 100.82 tmcft and it overflowed thrice last year. The current reservoir level was 1,611.12 feet, while on the same day last year it was only 1,588.16 tmcft.
While water can be released through Tungabhadra Low-Level Canal for Kurnool if the storage was above 9 tmcft, the High-Level Main Canal, which brings water to the Anantapur district, can receive water only when the water is 29 tmcft or above. While 10 tmcft is reserved for drinking purposes, about 15 tmcft will be released for irrigating 1.34 lakh acres in three districts on a pro-rata basis. Water drawal from the LLC is proposed from June 25 for Kurnool, while in Anantapur it will tentatively start from July 8.