To reduce the long queue at hand pumps, Uttarakhand pey jal nigam has decided to install around 200 eco-friendly hand pumps, which will work through solar energy. The department has managed to install 58 of them in various parts of Dehradun district, while eight still needs to be put up. Water shortage is a major issue for the residents here who grapple with the crisis during summers every year.According to the pey jal nigam officials, these hand pumps will be very beneficial for areas like Vikas Nagar, Raipur, Kalsi, Sahaspur, Doiwala and Chakrata.
Instead of being manually operated, these motorised hand pumps will use solar energy to pump out the water. “These pumps will be very cost effective since we will be using solar energy for the running the motor and as they are motorized, the manual labour will also be minimal,” said Jeetendra Deo, executive engineer of mechanical division in the nigam.The sanction for supply of solar power for pumps was granted in 2014. The initiative was undertaken to improve water supply after existing drinking water system failed to function due to unavailability of electricity. Pey jal nigam conducted surveys to short list areas suffering from acute water crisis. The funding for this project is given by central and state government jointly.”Currently, we are motorizing only the existing hand pumps which costs approximately Rs 5 lakh per pump. The cost will be increased by about Rs 2 lakh, if we have to install a hand pump as well. The hand pumps will also ensure that nearly 5,000 litres of water can be stored in tanks,” Deo said.
He said that hand pumps are quite useful in smaller colonies as tube wells cost more.Out of 200 hand pumps, 66 are to be in Dehradun, 45 in Nainital, 39 in Udham Singh Nagar, 20 in Almora, 10 in Bageshwar and the rest in Pithoragarh. The total cost for the project is estimated to be approximately Rs 980 lakh.”Earlier, we had to stand in long queues for filling water since using hand pumps was very cumbersome and the residents would take a long time to fill couple of buckets. But now the water is pumped out faster and we don’t have to wait for long,” said Reena Tiwari, a resident of Ishwar Vihar in Raipur.Pey jal nigam is planning to install 100 more hand pumps in Dehradun district by next year, while motorization of tube wells is also in pipeline.