France bans Israel firms from upcoming defense fair

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NEW DELHI: The Delhi government on Friday approached the Supreme Court seeking help in procuring more water from neighbouring states as the Indian capital faces severe water shortage amid sweltering heat.

Delhi depends on external sources for its fresh water supply as its own groundwater reserves are scarce. Most of the water that reaches Delhi comes from the state of Haryana via the Yamuna river.

In a petition to the Supreme Court, the local administration sought additional supplies from neighbouring Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh for at least a month as temperatures in some parts of the capital reached nearly 50 degrees Celsius this week due to the ongoing heatwave.

“Delhi’s water demand has increased in the scorching heat. It is everyone’s responsibility to meet the needs of the national capital,” the petition says.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has admitted that there is a huge gap between supply and demand in the capital.

“The demand for water has increased sharply due to the heat waves. Delhi’s water supply from neighbouring states has been restricted. This means that demand is high and supply is less,” Kejriwal wrote on X on Friday, urging Prime Minister Narendra Modi to intervene as Delhi’s neighbouring states are ruled by his Bharatiya Janata Party.

“We need to come together to solve this problem… If the BJP talks to its governments in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh and supplies water to Delhi for a month, the people of Delhi will appreciate their efforts.”

More than 90 percent of Delhi’s population of over 18 million has access to piped water. However, due to acute shortages, this water is not available in several areas in East and South Delhi and people are queuing up to get water from tankers.

“It was almost a tough week. My whole family stood in line for hours just to fill a few buckets,” Hariom Saha, a gardener who lives in Sanjay Camp in Chanakyapuri, told Arab News.

“I work in a private company and am at least three hours late for work every day. As soon as we wake up in the morning, the stress begins about how we will meet our water needs for the day.”

Vikash Kumar from Geeta Colony had the same story to tell.

“Yesterday, I fetched some water from the tap of the public toilet in my area for bathing because the water supply is so poor,” said Kumar, who works as a cook in a restaurant.

“We are not rich enough to buy bottled water and store it at home. We depend on tankers to store water and bottling water from tankers is a big job.”

Earlier this week, the Delhi government announced a series of emergency measures, including a ban on the use of drinking water for washing cars and on construction sites. The Delhi Water Board announced a fine of 2,000 rupees ($25) for anyone found misusing the water.

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