After a dry spell in June, heavy rainfall in most parts of Maharashtra in July has more than doubled the collective water stock in dams across the state within a span of a fortnight.
While the water stock in the dams recorded on July 1 was 24.07 per cent of the total storage capacity, it increased to 53.73 per cent on Friday evening, as per the data provided by the state water resources department.
Heavy showers in Konkan, most parts of western Maharashtra, Marathwada, Vidarbha and other regions of the state have increased the water stock in dams with many small reservoirs even overflowing.
The month of June mostly remained dry with only a few spells of rain, but the intensity of showers increased in the past one week of July, which helped the water stock jump by over 16 per cent during this short span, the data said.
“The comparative figures of the current year and the previous years reveal that the water stock is not only more so far this year, but it went up at a faster speed. The intense showers in the past one week are the sole reason behind it,” an official from the water resources department said.
The data indicated that dams in Maharashtra had 24.07 per cent stock this year on July 1 as compared to 32.62 per cent in 2021. The downpour during the fortnight took the storage to 53.73 per cent on Friday. The reservoirs were only 35.53 per cent full during the corresponding period last year.
“It means, the difference between the water stock as on July 1 this year as compared to the corresponding period last year was around eight per cent, but the difference after the downpour increased to nearly 18 per cent,” he said.
“It only means that the state has received more rains between July 1 and 15 this year as compared to the corresponding period in 2021. The stock will increase further at a high speed till Monday because some dams have a huge catchment areas and it takes at least 48 hours to see the rise in water level after heavy rains,” the official said.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) data showed that the state has received excess showers compared to its average seasonal rainfall so far.
As per the data, Maharashtra has received 489.3 mm average rainfall till July 15 as against its seasonal average of 367.7 mm recorded from June 1. So the state has received 133.1 per cent excess rainfall so far this year.
The water resources department’s data shows that between July 10 and 15, the intensity of the rainfall was very high. The collective water storage in dams was 33.3 per cent on July 10 this year as compared to 32.96 per cent recorded on the corresponding date the previous year.
“The dam water level jumped from 33.3 per cent on July 10 to 53.73 per cent in just five days. It was the same period when several districts in coastal Maharashtra and a few in Madhya Maharashtra and Vidarbha were given red alert of extremely heavy rainfall,” the official said.