Mangaluru: Days after Sri Manjunatheshwara Temple in Dharmasthala asked devotees to postpone their visit to the temple in view of a severe water crisis, Dharmasthala Dharmadhikari Veerendra Heggade talks with Karnataka Chief Secretary Vijaya Bhaskar about the acute water shortage being faced at the Pilgrim Centre Dharmasthala. As per the sources, Veerendra Heggade informed Vijaya Bhaskar that 30,000 to 40,000 devotees were facing water crisis in the temple and water problems were worsening every day as the flow in the Netravathi river has reduced drastically. Meanwhile, the state government has planned to construct a new vented dam near Dharmasthala, in addition to the existing one across the Netravathi at ‘snana ghatta’ (bathing ghat), about 3 km away from Dharmasthala, supplying water to the Lord Manjunatha temple and the town. Veerendra Heggade had recently appealed to the devotees to postpone their visit to Dharmasthala due to the shortage of water faced for bathing and for preparing meals for visiting devotees. 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 famous temple gets thousands of devotees every day, which doubles during summer holidays and weekends.
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