Rainwater harvesting systems in 200 civic schools lying unused
Rainwater harvesting systems in over 200 municipal schools continue to gather dust, years after the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) spent money on setting them up. Most of the facilities lie unused owing to their poor maintenance.
In a letter to BMC, Sainath Durge, member of the municipal education committee, recently named schools where the rainwater harvesting systems were lying unused.
“When we went to various schools across the city, it was seen that none of them had a functional system for rainwater harvesting. While all these schools have the essential set-up , most of it is catching dust owing to poor maintenance,” said Durge.
In 2007, BMC had made it mandatory for all new buildings with more than 300 square metres of plot area to install the rainwater harvesting system. According to the norms, school buildings which came up after the stipulated date were equipped with the system. Each school was sanctioned an amount of ₹2 lakh under the major repair works to get the system in place. Depending on the area available in schools, water tanks were set up with a filtration system. Rainwater can be stored in these tanks and can be used by the schools after it is filtered.
At Bharucha Road municipal school and Sakharam Tare municipal school in Kandivli, garbage has accumulated in the rainwater pits.
“It is sad to see that despite heavy rain the city received this year, the water could not be conserved owing to poor maintenance of the harvesting plants,” Durge said.
Atul Kulkarni, deputy chief engineer at BMC’s school infrastructure cell (SIC) said that harvesting units in some schools might need maintenance.
“Many units are working across schools in the city. We were told about a few schools where they are not working so we have decided to conduct a detailed survey of all schools to get an idea on the status. Appropriate action will be taken and we will ensure that all of them are functional,” he said.
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