A housing society may have the foot a bill, estimated at Rs6 crore, the civic body incurs after repairing the Veravali water tunnel, which was damaged when the society dug a borewell illegally.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) also filed an FIR against Farhad Housing Society at Bandivli Hill Road in Jogeshwari
(East), which also allegedly distributed water to nearby societies by illegally fixing a pipe in the tunnel.
The matter came to light when citizens of Jogeshwari (West) and Andheri (West) complained of water problems over the past few weeks. After the puncture was discovered, the BMC sprang into action and water special project (WSP) department was given a contract to repair the tunnel.
Last week, the civic body completed the first phase of repairs by fixing the leakage from outside. The BMC will spend around Rs5.4 crore to repair the tunnel. Sources said this combined with other costs including wastage and manpower will come to around Rs6 crore.
“According to rules, we will cover the entire cost of repair of the underground water tunnel from the housing society. Apart from Rs5.4 crore, which is the cost of cost, there are other expenses involved including water wastage and using civic resources. All this will be added to the bill,” said a source from the civic body.
Residents of the area, meanwhile, will have to face water problems till the tunnel is fully repaired.
Dr Sanjay Mukherjee, additional municipal commissioner, said, “The society dug the borewell illegally, causing the puncture. After completing the work, we will send the final bill to the society as part of their property tax. If they fail to pay the amount, we will ask collector to hold revenue recovery certificate in order to stall redevelopment or sale.”
The repair work will be done in two phases. The first phase has been completed and the leakage has been fixed on the surface of the tunnel to prevent wastage. The second phase will begin next month during which the inside of the tunnel will be repaired.
“To ensure residents do not face water problems, for the duration of repairs, an old water line will be made operational,” said a BMC source.