More than half the respondents to an instaVaani-Mint survey said their neighbourhoods are battling water shortages, as the country braces for a warmer-than-normal summer.

InstaVaani polled 507 people across major metro cities in the survey, conducted at a time when the water available in India’s most important reservoirs stands at a mere 29% of total storage capacity, as per the Central Water Commission.

Fifty-seven per cent (219 of 386 respondents) reported water shortages in their neighbourhoods, with 56% of respondents (193 of 345 respondents) saying the government wasn’t doing enough to provide adequate supplies.

While over 80% of Mumbai’s respondents said they receive piped water supply, Mumbai has the highest proportion of respondents claiming water shortages.

More than 70% of respondents from Chennai said they practise rain water harvesting in their residential buildings.

This is far higher than any of the other surveyed cities, but over 60% of respondents in Chennai reported water shortages.

Of the people who responded to specific questions, 25% (76 respondents) said they bought bottled water every day and 69% (191) replied they don’t practice rainwater harvesting.

The water shortages coincide with the onset of a summer that will see temperatures climb more than 1 degree Celsius above normal, according to the India Meteorological Department’s (IMD’s) forecast on Thursday.

The department said the frequency of heatwaves is also expected to be higher than normal in central and north-west India.

Last year was declared the third warmest in India since 1901.

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