Wednesday, December 27, 2006

50 wards to get Cauvery water in six months

50 wards to get Cauvery water in six months

The Hindu

Foundation stone laid for Rs. 16.65-crore BWSSB scheme Foundation stone laid for Rs. 16.65-crore BWSSB scheme

# Officials told to look at Hemavathi as an alternative source
# Seven tmcft more water to be drawn from the Cauvery

Bangalore: About 50 wards in the eight urban local bodies around Bangalore will get Cauvery water within the next six months, said N.C. Muniyappa, chairman of the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) on Tuesday.

He was speaking at the foundation stone laying ceremony for a Rs. 16.65-crore BWSSB scheme to get 100 million litres of water per day (MLD) from the Cauvery to these urban local bodies.

"While we are getting 500 million litres of water per day for Rs. 3,300 crore under funding from the Japan Bank International Cooperation, we have reduced the expenditure on this scheme from Rs. 500 crore to Rs. 16.65 crore thanks to our engineers," he said.

Mr. Muniyappa also said, "Until now, we have not given importance to sewage management in the city. For this, we have developed a master plan and getting funds under Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM)."

Ramachandra Gowda, Minister for Science and Technology, said that alternative plans should be made to get water for Bangalore and not depend on the Cauvery alone. He called upon officials to look at the Hemavathi as an alternative source of drinking water. "We could get water from Kunigal through Solur to Thippagondanahalli Reservoir," he said.

Minister for Health and Family Welfare R. Ashok said that plans were afoot to get seven tmcft more of Cauvery water by 2012, in addition to the 12 thousand million cubic feet (tmcft) of water already being drawn from the Cauvery. As much as 5,000 acres of government land had been identified in Greater Bangalore, he said.

BWSSB Employees Union leader Ramanna presented a memorandum seeking an increase in the number of employees. "Our staff strength has been decreasing over the years but the amount of work has increased," he said.

In reference to the privately funded Greater Bangalore Water Supply and Sanitation Project (GBWASP), Mr. Ramanna also urged Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy not to allow for more privatisation. The Chief Minister, who laid the foundation for the scheme, said that he would look into the demand for increasing the workforce. But he cautioned that a rise in workforce should not lead to a decrease in efficiency.


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