With Dakshina Kannada and Udupi facing severe water crisis this summer, the Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala has asked devotees to temporarily postpone their visit to the temple town. No water inflow into the Netravathi river and the dam in Dharmasthala has caused drought. And, the temple town located on the banks of the river Netravathi is eventually facing a water crisis.
Dharmasthala Faces water crisis
The Sri Manjunatha Swami Temple is located in the foothills of the Western Ghats in Belthangady Taluk of Dakshina Kannada district. It is said that the water crisis here is worsening every day as the flow in the Netravathi river has reduced drastically.
According to Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre, the freshwater flow has stopped in all major rivers in the coastal belt including Netravathi, Phalguni, Swarna, Chakra, Varahi, Sharavathi, Aghanashini, and Kali; all located in the coastal belt.
First Time in The Temple History
The famous temple gets thousands of devotees every day and it doubles during summer holidays and weekends. Sources said this is the first time in recent history that the temple has asked devotees to postpone their visit due to water scarcity.
The temple, which also provides boarding and meals to its devotees has the requirement of a huge amount of water for drinking, cooking and other purposes.
Veerendra Heggade speaks
Dharmasthala Dharmadhikari Veerendra Heggade on Friday said, “Similar to other parts of Dakshina Kannada district, the water crisis in the temple is worsening every day as the flow in the Netravathi river has reduced drastically.”
Noting that there is a huge requirement of water for the devotees visiting the temple, he has asked people to postpone their visit by a few days and co-operate.
The water crisis has hit major parts of the Dakshina Kannada district that receives over 4000 mm rainfall. In Mangaluru, the local body has resorted to rationing and households are getting water just four days a week.
The temple administration has been taking water conservation measures for years, using only treated water for its plantation and garden near its college campus. Additionally, it has also been advising shopkeepers nearby, not to waste water by using it to clean their doorsteps in summer. But despite such measures taken by the temple, the town is still facing one of its worst water crises this summer.