Monday, November 26, 2007

Now, all water meters to be installed outside the house

Now, all water meters to be installed outside the house
Ashwini Y S | TNN

Bangalore: No more getting away with installing water meters anywhere one pleases — and that includes inside the house, kitchen or verandah.
Henceforth, all water meters have to be fixed outside the house/building, like electricity meters, for Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) is not going to go soft on consumers in this regard.
BWSSB chairperson Latha Krishna Rao shared these details with The Times of India. BWSSB has been witness to discrepancies like consumers tampering with water meters.
That apart, most meters in the city are old and have not ever been calibrated since they were installed, resulting in inaccurate readings.
“The location of all water meters will have to be outside the house. We want it as close to the compounds possible. Only then can uniformity be achieved. The board is planning to install new meters initially for all new connections, including in the 72 wards in erstwhile CMCs,’’ said Latha.
Silver lining?
One good thing about the affair is that BWSSB will, in all probability, not charge consumers for the meters and their installation. “We are considering not levying these charges, for the Board wants to fund this facility. We also want to put legal provisions in place, for till now anything related to water meters has been left to discretion,’’ added Rao.
A consumer can save between Rs 550 and Rs 1740, the costs for replacing and installating new meters, if the project comes through.
In return BWSSB, wants to be in charge, so that water meters will be regularly calibrated and replaced.
“We are holding discussions on regularity of replacing meters. It can vary from once in three, five or seven years. This way, the board can replace all meters at one time every few years.’’
Rao said after installing meters for new connections, the board would then move on to the 100 wards in the core area, where all old meters will be replaced.
To reduce discretionary powers, BWSSB will have all the meters locked and sealed. Around 1.5 lakh meters are undergoing the life cycle test at the Fluid Control Research Institute, Palghat.
Supply countdown begins
Come December, 72 wards in the seven erstwhile CMC’s of the BBMP will receive 100 mld water from the BWSSB — a project that has taken two years to materialise.
Consumers who have not paid the Greater Bangalore Water Supply and Sanitation Project user fee will have to remit the same, to avoid payment of additional fee. So far, only 20%of the 72,000 connections in the 72 wards have paid the user fee.


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