BMC’s plan of 24X7 water supply for Mumbai delayed indefinitely
Currently about 10% of Mumbai’s population in areas like Ghatkopar, Bhandup and Mulund receives uninterrupted water supply. On average, each household in Mumbai gets about four hours of water daily.mumbai Updated: Mar 25, 2017 23:05 IST
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) ambitious plan to provide 24X7 water supply in the city has been pushed back indefinitely. What’s more, the trial run which was to be carried out in two administrative wards - T and H west (Mulund and Bandra areas) is likely to be completed only by March 2018.
In its second meeting on Thursday, the standing committee members demanded that the project should be completed on a war-footing.
Currently about 10% of Mumbai’s population in areas like Ghatkopar, Bhandup and Mulund receives uninterrupted water supply. On average, each household in Mumbai gets about four hours of water daily.
The water distribution and improvement project (WDIP) was taken up by the BMC in 2014 to provide uninterrupted 24X7 water supply. Under the project, the BMC planned to offer 10 services that included quality assurance for water, leak detection in pipes, GIS (geographical information system) mapping for the existing water supply network, asset registration, customer survey and customer relationship management.
BMC had hoped that after the successful implementation of the pilot project, it would provide round-the-clock water supply to citizens by 2019. The private consultants hired for the job, however, took four years to prepare for the pilot project leaving only one year to implement the project across all the other wards. This led to the consultants demanding an extension. But this would cause an indefinite delay in completing the project across the city, said corporators.
Manoj Kotak, group leader of BJP, said, “The project was started three years ago but the administration has not even completed the pilot project yet. If this is the pace with which this project is going to be carried out then we don’t know how long it will take for Mumbai to get uninterrupted supply of water.”
Former deputy mayor and BJP corporator Alka Kelkar said, “Forget getting water 24X7. In Bandra we get contaminated water.”
BMC has already spent around Rs30 crore of the Rs270 crore set aside for the project on various works so far, said a civic official. He added, “The corporation has never handled a project like this before so we faced a lot of setbacks initially. The project was delayed by a year when we were trying to map the underground water pipelines. After it is implemented, it will mostly be a technical process so we want to make sure that it is worked out without any errors.”
Ashok Tawadia, chief engineer of hydraulic engineering department, said, “The installation of pressure regulatory valves in the main water supply pipeline is taking time but we should be able to complete the pilot project soon.”