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HindustanTimes Sat,02 Aug 2014

Mumbai: Civic committee will oppose plan to hike water charges

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, June 14, 2013
First Published: 00:55 IST(14/6/2013) | Last Updated: 00:57 IST(14/6/2013)

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) decision to increase water charges will be opposed by members of the standing committee when the proposal is placed before it on Friday.

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The civic body has decided to raise the charges for drinking water by 8% with effect from June 16 this year. This means a family of four consumes around 750 litres of water a day and is paying Rs. 90 a month, it may have to pay Rs. 97 when the next water bill comes.

Rahul Shewale, chairman of the civic standing committee, wrote a letter to the municipal commissioner on Thursday, asking the corporation to withdraw the proposal.

“Though the administration is constructing new dams and water tunnels, issues such as water leakage and thefts still continue. Until these problems are solved, there should be no hike in water charges,” he wrote.

Civic officials said the proposal was only for the implementation of the budgetary decision taken a year ago. “The proposal will be placed in the standing committee to inform them about the hike. The committee’s approval wouldn’t be required as the 2012-13 budget was approved by the committee last year,” said RB Bambale, hydraulic engineer, BMC.

The 2012-13 civic budget presented by the then municipal commissioner Subodh Kumar included increase in water charges supplied by the civic body- a hike that was enforced after a decade. The budget had also proposed an annual increase in water charges by 8%.

The increase in water charges will be effective after June 15.


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