BHOPAL: The frequent breaches in water pipeline cause revenue loss to Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) while residents in Kolar suffer as they do not receive water. A pipeline, which burst on Friday suspended water supply to a population of over 7 lakh.
The civic body spends Rs 40 lakh annually on repair and maintenance of pipeline. But, it has not levied any penalty on the firm that is engaged in replacing old pipelines.
The overworked pipelines have damaged over the years. Though replacement work is underway for three years, 30% of the project remains to be completed. The trouble began BMC increased the volume of water supplied from Kolar after it built new overhead and sump tanks. Earlier, the civic body used to supply 34 MGD water from Kolar but now 38 MGD water is supplied from it. About 15 new tanks were built within a few years and it led to extra pressure on the old pipeline.
Worse, junior officers are handling the project. BMC has an executive engineer rank officer in civil department but he was sidelined and an officer much junior to him was granted charge for Kolar. Also, the civic body has failed to take action against the firm that is laying down the new pipeline. Though 30% of the work is left, BMC has released over 90 per cent of posed amount for it.
The prorject of new pipeline has cost the civic body Rs 135 crore and more than Rs 120 crore have already been released to TATA Sons. Former corporator Girish Sharma says the BMC has sidelined its own senior officials and the officials on deputation from other departments are handling the project. “A junior officer with a disputed image is working with big projects,” he said. When contacted, AR Pawar, BMC city engineer, said they will assess the loss and will take action against the firm for delay in laying down the pipeline.
The water supply to all areas linked with Kolar water connection will receive water supply from Sunday. The leakage was fixed on Saturday and overhead tanks have begun to receive water supply.