Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Wednesday that water supply to VIPs should be cut if there was a water shortage in the city.
“It will start with me and the ministers. Only the Prime Minister, President, embassies and emergency services should be exempt,” said Kejriwal in the Delhi assembly.
AAP leaders asked the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) to ensure equal distribution of water even in case of shortage. “Before polls, the Haryana government was supplying water to us, but they have stopped. There should be no politics over water,” the CM said.
Kejriwal said that if Delhi faces water scarcity, public alone should not bear the brunt of it.
AAP MLAs said the Capital is facing water shortage and a lot depends on supply from Haryana. They said the three BJP MLAs in the house must put pressure on the BJP government in Haryana to supply more water to Delhi. “In case of a water crisis, the chief minister and other ministers should also share the problem,” said deputy CM Manish Sisodia.
With summer approaching, the city’s water woes are likely to be more pronounced this year.
The biggest problem facing the government and the city is Haryana’s refusal to give Delhi 80 MGD (million gallons a day) of additional water. This is instrumental for the existing water treatment plants to supply as much water as they were designed to.
AAP MLA Gulab Singh said that in the early 1990s the DJB said it couldn’t assure water supply. Another MLA from AAP Adarsh Shastri said 80% of Dwarka did not have DJB supply.
However, the Delhi Development Authority still went ahead and built the entire Dwarka. “Again, in 2004, the DJB said it could not assure supply. Builders are building flats but nobody knows where water will come from. DDA’s master plan 2021 must be put on hold,” he said.
According to DJB officials, the body receives 835 MGD of water -- 755 MGD from surface water and 80 MGD from ground water sources. The demand, however, is 1,100 MGD. About 20% households in Delhi do not get piped water supply and depend on tankers and bore wells, said DJB officials.