The Delhi Jal Board (DJB), that has added 4 lakh new meters, is eyeing an increased revenue collection of Rs. 2082.43 crore for the 2013-14 financial year by way of increased billing.
The board members of the water body on Thursday approved its annual budget of Rs. 3951.78 crore - which comprises Rs. 1869.35 crore under plan head and Rs. 2082.43 crore under non-planned structure.
The budget documents project a net cash surplus of Rs. 233.57 crore, for which the water utility is aiming to increase billing income by installing more working meters. Of the 19 lakh connections, only about 8.5 lakh meters were said to be properly working while 3.5 lakh connections did not have any meters at all.
The remaining 7 lakh-odd connections had meters installed most of which were either non-functional or faulty.“In line with bringing down non-revenue water (NRW) -- water that does not generate bills for various reasons -- the board today approved the installation of four lakh meters. Of these, 3 lakh would be automatic meters and rest normal ones,” a DJB official said. In absence of properly functioning meters, the DJB has been charging consumers on an ad-hoc basis, resulting into incomplete billing revenue.
For the last three years, replacement of faulty meters, new meters and the annual hike of 10% in water tariff had resulted in increased revenue for the DJB.
Net Surplus Cash
“The net surplus cash revenue has increased from Rs. 40.56 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 233.57 crore in 2013-14,” DJB chief executive officer Debashree Mukherjee claimed in her budget speech.“Water tariff rationalization has enabled DJB to meet its operations and maintenance cost during the last three years,” Mukherjee added.