Bangalore is Bangalored: India’s IT capital dries up, hit by its own success

Bengaluru or Bangalore is drying up. India’s ‘Silicon Valley’ is currently experiencing an acute water crisis. Rapid urbanisation, coupled with tremendous population growth, has led to the current state and authorities will need to take interim as well as long-term measures, including mandatory water harvesting and groundwater recharging, to overcome the crisis.

Water crisis has left Bengaluru parched. Photo courtesy: Screengrab from YouTube.
Water crisis has left parts of Bengaluru parched. Photo courtesy: Screengrab from YouTube.

As taps are running dry, it has triggered another major problems. As per reports, techies are now requesting their employers to grant them a work-from-home status to avoid the situation in the city. Several tech employees have expressed their desires to go back to their native places and work till the current situation is resolved. Bengaluru has over a million people working in the IT sector, who are employed by top IT MNCs like IBM, TCS, Infosys, Accenture, Cisco, Oracle and others.

Pondering over the issue, T Dey, an IT employee residing in HSR Layout, told Connected to India: “The situation isn’t out of control over here at the moment. But if we don’t get water, I’ll have to pack my bags and head home. There’s no alternative.”

Locals storing water for future use. Photo courtesy: Screengrab from YouTube
Residents storing water for future use. Photo courtesy: Screengrab from YouTube

Some have already purchased their tickets or have left Bengaluru, making plans to return during the monsoons. Ironically, in 2022, the monsoon left a major part of Bengaluru flooded, exposing the tech hub’s poor drainage system.

Local residents and industry have now started to blame the severe water shortage on rapid urbanisation without proper planning, unequal and improper distribution, poor water management and negligence by local authorities.

According to a report by The Print quoting an IISc study, “over the past five decades, 93 percent of the city [Bengaluru] has lost its lake and forest cover to concrete and construction. There has been a 79 percent loss in water cover and 88 percent loss in forest cover while constructions have increased by over 1,000 percent”.

Begur Lake. Photo: Connected to India
Begur Lake in Souther Bengaluru. Photo: Connected to India

The crisis has reduced water availability to half day now, local residents told PTI.

Speaking to Connected to India, A Dasgupta, a tech employee residing in Electronic City Phase 2, said, “The situation is grim. The flat owner sent us a text asking us to reduce water consumption till the situation gets normal.” Dasgupta said that one of his colleagues, living in another part of the city, has to pay an extra fare for water usage, which wasn’t the case earlier.

Videos, on social media platforms, show residents struggling to get water for their basic necessities.

Founder and CEO of, Murugavel Janakiraman, suggested mandatory water harvesting to solve the crisis.

The issue can be solved by taking steps towards reducing water consumption, recycling, rejuvenating and creating water bodies to increase groundwater levels, and the government facilitating water supply,” he told PTI.

With employees forced to ‘flee’, some bosses are voicing discontent.

Co-founder and CEO of Kuku FM, Lal Chand Bisu, said, “Companies have started giving work from home, as employees refuse to come to office citing water shortage. This is of course impacting operations because there is a whole new setup that needs to be done to cater to the sudden shift.”

“Prices of water tankers have more than doubled, from around Rs 2500 for a tanker earlier, to now about Rs 5,000 for the same,” Bisu told PTI.

As prices of water tankers are doubling, apartment building owners are resorting to single fill. Photo courtesy: Screengrab from YouTube
With prices of water tankers doubling, apartment building owners are resorting to single fill. Photo courtesy: Screengrab from YouTube

Asked how he’s handling the water shortage, an apartment building owner in Shanthipura, Electronic City, who requested anonymity, told Connected to India that there’s nothing much that he can do except wait for the rains, and the authorities to take actions.

The government is already implementing numerous initiatives. The city’s groundwater supplies will be restored by injecting 1,300 million litres of purified water into the drying lakes per day.

After testing, the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) would also build water plants with cutting-edge technology and put filter borewells next to the restored lake beds in order to deliver water, according to civic agency officials.

(With inputs from PTI)