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Chandigarh

CHANDIGARH-No additional supply this summer

June 03, 2019 06:22 AM

COURTESY HT JUNE 3

Vivek Gupta/Rajanbir Singh chandigarh@hindustantimes.com ■
No additional supply this summer
CHANDIGARH : Chandigarh will continue to reel under acute water shortage as the supply of additional 29 million gallons per day (MGD) through Phases 5 and 6 of the Kajauli project has been ruled out in light of fresh technical glitches.

Residents are already in a tight spot, with temperatures soaring over 40 degrees and pushing the city’s water requirement to 110 MGD against the existing supply of 80-85 MGD from the first four phases and tubewells.

The Chandigarh municipal corporation (MC) has sent two letters to UT administrator VP Singh Badnore in the past one week, seeking his intervention in sorting out the latest issues affecting the ₹200-crore project, which has already missed multiple deadlines.

However, MC engineers dealing with the matter confirmed that additional supply is not expected before September or October, by when summer will be over.

THE STALEMATE

A 50 metre damaged portion of the 40km pipeline beneath a railway crossing has delayed the additional water supply to the city.

The problem emerged during testing of the pipeline in April when the portion developed leakages, halting the commissioning of Phases 5 and 6.

Greater Mohali Area Development Authority, which laid the pipeline, asked the railway department to replace the portion, citing that repairs work won’t be enought to meet the safety standards of the line in future. However, the Railways put the onus back on GMADA, leading to a stalemate and holding up the project.

Seeing no solution in sight, the MC then requested Badnore to take up the matter with the railway minister and to convene a joint meeting of all stakeholders to iron out the differences and expedite the project.

A senior MC official, dealing with the matter, said intimation about the meeting from Badnore’s office is awaited. Sources said Badnore has already taken up the matter with the railway ministry.

RESIDENTS HASSLED Meanwhile, water supply remains erratic in the city.

SK Khosla, general secretary of the Sector 40C MIG houses association, said owing to shortage, residents are forced to call private tankers. “It is a financial burden, as a tanker costs as high as ₹2,000 per visit,” he said.

Hitesh Puri, president of Chandigarh Residents Associations Welfare Federation, water shortage is acute in most parts of the city. In areas such as Sectors 38, 39, 43 and 44, even those staying on the first floor are not getting water.

During the MC’s House meeting on Friday, water shortage was among the major issues deliberated upon.

Manimajra councillor Jagtar Singh Jagga said water supply has been severely affected in his ward. Mauli Jagran councillor Anil Kumar Dube said people in his ward are forced to use booster pumps, which raise the risk of rupturing the water lines and further contamination concerns. Last week, several people in Sector 39 were taken ill due to what was suspected to be mining of sewage with water due to leakage in underground pipes.

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