The Jaipur civic authorities have drawn up two master plans worth Rs 2,400 crore to unclog city’s drainage and sewerage network cracking under rapid urbanisation and population growth.
The Pink City has grown manifold in the last 10 years with the district population growing 26.19% between 2001 and 2011. The population stands at 6.62 million, according to the 2011 Census.
Flooding is a routine feature every monsoon. Worse, the situation perpetuates because no action is taken against law-breakers. “Everyone knows how the system works. Officials, politicians, businessmen, even the public all are in collusion and responsible for the mess,” a Jaipur Development Authority (JDA) official said.
The JDA has now finalised a drainage master plan for all 90 wards of the city. Existing drains would be expanded and new drains built to prevent flooding.
The plan outlay will be of around Rs 2,000 crore and will be finalised in a month, JDA secretary Pawan Arora said. “We will send it to the Urban Development and Housing Department as we don’t have the required funds. They will seek funds from the Centre under one of the schemes.”
The Jaipur Municipal Corporation has also chalked out a Rs 400 crore plan under the AMRUT scheme, JMC additional commissioner Rakesh Sharma said. Sewerage lines will be upgraded and new lines laid where they are missing.
Jaipur had witnessed severe flooding in 2012 when the city and outlying neighbourhoods were submerged after heavy rain on August 21. Later, the high court had ordered the JDA to clear the Amanishah Nullah – the city’s main drainage channel - of encroachments and undertake its restoration. The JDA is now clearing the area of encroachments.
The Amanishah Nullah flows through the city with smaller channels draining into it. Other channels include C-Scheme Nullah, Jawahar Nullah, Brahmpuri and Nag Talai nullahs. But they have been lost to unauthorised constructions and encroachments.
“The Amanishah Nullah is now a dirty drain with sewage and the city’s effluents flowing into it. The nulla has been encroached by land mafia in collusion with JDA officials and several unauthorised colonies have mushroomed there,” PUCL president and activist Kavita Srivastava said.
Unregulated growth of the city has increased the pressure on the existing facilities, senior town planner Rajesh Tolara said. “The city urgently needs a complete drainage plan so that it can cope with any calamity.”
The total sewerage waste generated in Jaipur is 400 million litres per day (mld). “The JMC has a sewerage treatment plant in Dehlawas with two units of 62.5 mld capacity. Brahmpuri and Jaisinghpura Khor have STP plants with 30 mld and 50 mld capacity,” JMC additional chief engineer SC Gupta said.
A mega drainage plan was first mooted in 2002, but the Rs 600 crore project fell through due fund crunch. In 2012, the plan outlay was raised to Rs 2,000 crore but again it failed to take off.