BJP wants crackdown on Mumbai tanker mafia
A day after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Kirit Somaiya blamed alliance partner Shiv Sena for the spread of water tanker mafia, party city chief Ashish Shelar has claimed 16,890 million litres of water is lost every month (563 million litres of water a day) to theft and misuse by water tanker owners.
He said this is causing a major revenue loss to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and demanded a crackdown on tanker mafia and a criminal case within a month.
According to civic officials, 27% is the non-revenue water supply, which means it is lost to wastage owing to leakage or theft. Shelar on Thursday claimed according to the leak detection work carried out under the water distribution improvement programme in H-west (Bandra, Khar and Santacruz) and T ward (Mulund) on a pilot basis, of the 27%, leakage losses come to 12% to 15%, while the remaining is theft.
According to the senior BJP leader, in the past four months, only 9,181 municipal water tankers were supplied to the city, compared to 38,999 private water tankers doing the rounds.
Shelar took a dig at the Sena, claiming the ruling party should take the responsibility of the loss of water and revenue. “The theft is helping the tanker mafia make money. There is a chain of BMC officials who are helping the mafia grow in the city. We want the racket to be busted within a month and a criminal case to be filed,” he said.
Shelar met civic chief Ajoy Mehta and demanded an inquiry. Mehta has sent the complaint to additional municipal commissioner Sanjay Mukherjee instructing him to collect information on water loss and suggest action.