Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Amenities remain a distant dream

Amenities remain a distant dream
Poornima Nataraj, Bangalore, DH News Service:

Living with adversities has become a daily affair for these residents. Even basic facilities such as water, roads and drains have become a distant dream.

The areas they live in are located only eight kilometres away from Vidhana Soudha: Bhadrappa Layout, Maruthinagar, Devinagar and Balaji Layout.

As Bytarayanapura Joint Commissioner Virupaksha Mysore puts it, "These areas were under CMC earlier and were later included under the BBMP limits. Only Rs six crore has been sanctioned for each ward, where there is a need of Rs 1500 crore to undertake developmental work of the entire constituency".

These areas were in news during the rain-triggered floods in 2005. People had to be rescued by boats. Now with the onset of the monsoons, the situation remains the same, and the flood threat is even more formidable.

For water, people survive on borewells. Underground drains (UGD) have never being laid, and so there is no question of manholes. Many roads here have never been asphalted.

One of the residents, Retd Defence Officer K P Subbaiah regrets to have constructed a house in this locality. He says, "In spite of paying all kinds of taxes and charges, we are given step-motherly treatment. We still have to struggle for our basic needs".

Water connections

Here’s what the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) officials had to say on the water problem: More than 2,000 residents need Cauvery water connections.

Of them, only 60 residents here have paid Rs 8,500 for the pipelines in 2004 and Rs 3,600 for the water metres last year.

BWSSB Chief Engineer T Venkataraju said, "Only a handful of them have paid the water connection charges. I am ready to provide water, if at least residents of one road pay up the connection charges.”

Rajakaluve maintenance

Following the 2005 floods, an 18 kilometre stretch of the main drain (rajakaluve) was built at a cost of Rs 39 crore last year. But maintenance work has not been undertaken, weeds have overgrown here, leading to water stagnation that has in turn resulted in mosquito breeding.

Raghavan, a senior citizen residing here, said, "During summer, evenings were hell due to mosquito menace. There is no one to listen to our request for a medicinal spray or fogging”.

Confronted with these problems, BBMP Chief Engineer (Storm Water Drain) Siddagangappa said, "As this Layout is located below the SWD level, incidents of water entering does happen when it rains heavily. We have taken up de-silting work near Bhadrappa Layout bridge recently, shortly cleaning of weeds will also be carried out”. As there are no UGD lines, residents here make a huge pit to let out their drains. A few residents even let out their drains on to the gutters located on either sides of the roads.

What is more shocking is that sewage water flows dangerously close to the borewell taps making it vulnerable for contamination. An active resident of Balaji Layout G S Kumar said, "Water contamination always exists here. We nearly spend Rs 3,000 to Rs 4,000 for buying drinking water in a month. People who drink the borewell water here have been suffering silently".

BWSSB official informed, "UGD work is a Rs 800 crore work for which tenders have been called. But no one has come forward to take up the job".


Post a Comment

<< Home