India’s southern states are already facing drought, and there is acute water crisis as major reservoirs in these states are drying up. Even before summer starts, the water levels of many reservoirs are drastically reduced.


Tamil Nadu is the worst hit state, and the water level of its reservoirs is already 80 percent below the normal level according to a Times Of India report. As per the Central Water Commission (CWC) statistics after Tamil Nadu, it is Andhra Pradesh having 48 percent deficiency in storage followed by Karnataka (37 percent deficiency) and Kerala (31 percent deficiency). 


In 27 reservoirs across these southern states, the collective water storage has reduced by approximately 100 thousand million cubic feet in 20 days. This has led to increasing shortage of drinking as well as irrigation water which will intensify further.


The water level in the reservoirs depends on the basin of Cauvery river that happens to be the lifeline of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu farmers. The reservoirs have only 14 percent of their full reservoir level (FRL) which is a sharp drop in a decade. Also, the Krishna river basin reservoirs are also drying up in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. 


The Central government has issued advisories to the governments in the drought-hit southern states to employ urgent steps for using water optimally. The same report also stated that the Union ministries of water resources, as well as rural development, are ‘working in tandem with priority being accorded to water recharging blocks where water was overdrawn in the drought affected states’.


The central government is making efforts for recharging groundwater under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme; the national daily quoted a Union water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation department, official.