Stuck for 8 years, work on Maharashtra’s Gargai dam takes off
The long-pending Gargai dam project finally inched ahead with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) receiving a biodiversity study report on the Tansa Wildlife Sanctuary’s 750 hectares of land, the project’s proposed construction site.
The report said forest owlet, an endangered species, is threatened due to the project. However, the BMC has not got the conservation measures they should take for such endangered species. Only after the remedial measures are suggested, the project can be forwarded to the central and state governments for approvals.
A senior civic official from the water supply projects department, said, “The consultants are yet to give us the conservation measures if this project has to be implemented. But the report has not been very negative considering the sanctuary’s 750 hectares were studied and only one species is likely to be endangered, which is Forest Owlet.”
While the project is yet to get central ministry’s forest department’s nod, a consultant was appointed to carry out a study of the biodiversity on the Tansa Wildlife Sanctuary to seek their approval.
With the civic body stocking enough water to last the citizens until July 2017 and considering city’s rising drinking water requirement, the BMC had announced this project few years back.
Currently, city gets 3,780 million litres water daily as against the demand for 4,300 million litres. The Gargai dam project will provide the city with additional 440 million litres daily.
After a prolonged delay, the BMC aims to start the construction of the dam in the next two years. For the work on the Gargai project to start, the authorities need to rehabilitate at least 200 families from Wada in Palghar district.
The estimated cost of the project is Rs1,900 crore and set an ambitious target to complete in five years.
A civic official, said, “While the project cost is estimated to about Rs1,000 to Rs1,200 crore, the remaining will be net present value that will have to be submitted as a part of compensation for the wildlife sanctuary.”
Meanwhile, the civic body is also in the process of appointing a consultant to prepare a Detailed Project Report for the implementation of the project