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Your society will soon have water meters

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to install 3.11 lakh water meters as part of the Automated Meter Reading system under the Sujal Mumbai Abhiyan to measure water consumption and detect leakages.

india Updated: Aug 19, 2009 01:24 IST
Bhavika Jain

If you think you are paying for more water than you use, you can now measure your water usage.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to install 3.11 lakh water meters as part of the Automated Meter Reading system under the Sujal Mumbai Abhiyan to measure water consumption and detect leakages.

The cost of phase-II of the two phase project has been pegged at Rs 785 crore.

In phase I of the project, the civic body had installed around 6,000 water meters across the city and the suburbs six months ago on a trial basis.

After a positive feedback from the technical committee that included experts from Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay and Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute Mumbai, who were monitoring the pilot project, the BMC decided to carry it out at the mass level.

The pilot project had cost the civic body Rs 20 crore.

“We will now issue a work order for installing 3.11 lakh water meters for every connection in the city and suburbs as part of phase II,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner Anil Diggikar.

“The installation of these meters will take at least one year,” said Diggikar.

“Consumers will know exactly how much are they charged for water. We hope to bring down complaints from consumers about exorbitant amount of water charge.”

“In the pilot project, the meters were tested for all eventualities — under water, from high-pressure areas to low pressure areas, from elevated areas to slums,” said an engineer from the Water Department, requesting anonymity.

These meters will help detect leakages and thefts and hence help the civic body save water.

“These meters cannot be manually manipulated. Hence it will provide the customers with accurate bills,” he added.

The city gets 3,400 million litres of water daily (MLD), but loses about 700 MLD of water due to leakage and pilferage — the amount that will suffice the water needs of Pune or Nashik.

The Standing Committee on Tuesday gave a nod to the proposal, but said citizens should not be burdened with the rental and maintenance of the meters.

“If the common man will have to bear the cost of the maintenance and the rental of these meters, then we will take the proposal back,” said Corporator Rajendra Lad.

“The citizens are already paying a huge amount to get water in their homes. We don’t want to add to this cost,” said Corporator Ashish Shelar.

The BMC has invited three companies for the project — one each for the island city, the western and eastern suburbs.