krishna raja sagar dam
Cauvery water row: Without rain, Bengaluru could face drinking water shortage in January Pictured: Krishna Raja Sagar damFlickr

Bengaluru could face a severe drinking water shortage if it doesn't rain in the next few months, the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) said on Thursday. However, the Supreme Court directive to Karnataka regarding releasing Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu won't have an immediate impact as there is enough water for use till December 2016, BWSSB engineer-in-chief Kemparamaiah said. 

Massive protests marred daily life in Karnataka after the apex court ordered that 15,000 cusecs of water should be released to Tamil Nadu for 10 days starting Sept. 6. The Karnataka government released water on Tuesday night amid heavy security at the Krishna Raja Sagar dam and Kabini reservoir. 

"If it doesn't rain enough in the next few months, we may find ourselves staring at a water crisis from January. We hope the city receives good rain during October and November so that a problem doesn't arise," Kemparamaiah told the Times of India.

Of the 19 tmc feet of Cauvery water allotted to Bengaluru,  7 tmc feet stands utilised since the start of the monsoon. Even though the city needs another 12 tmc feet water to facilitate the IT hub's requirements until next monsoon, it may not be able to fulfil the city's needs after the Supreme Court order. 

Bengaluru may need to ration water from November if it doesn't rain in September and October. The city uses 1.5 tmc feet water per month to meet daily supply of 1,400 million litres per day.  

If it doesn't rain in the next two months, Bengaluru will face one of the worst drinking water crises in the recent past," another employee of BWSSB told TOI. 

The state-run water supplier serves a population of 8.5 million people and has 8,70,141 connections. During the Cauvery water dispute hearing, the state government had told the Supreme Court that the KRS dam has only 50 tmc feet of water, of which only 40 tmc feet of water is usable. The government also intends to file a review petition against the Supreme Court order.