Mumbai: Expert Team From Uttarakhand's Roorkee IIT To Visit Malabar Hill Reservoir For Inspection On June 3

Mumbai: Expert Team From Uttarakhand's Roorkee IIT To Visit Malabar Hill Reservoir For Inspection On June 3

The team will also assess both the reports of the expert committee appointed by the BMC. Based on their conclusion, the civic body will decide on demolishing or reconstructing the 135-year-old reservoir beneath the iconic Hanging Garden.

SHEFALI PARAB-PANDITUpdated: Wednesday, May 29, 2024, 10:07 PM IST
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Malabar Hill Reservoir | Vijay Gohil

Mumbai: An expert team of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee from Uttarakhand will visit the city next week to inspect the Malabar Hill Reservoir (MHR). The team will also assess both the reports of the expert committee appointed by the BMC. Based on their conclusion, the civic body will decide on demolishing or reconstructing the 135-year-old reservoir beneath the iconic Hanging Garden.

An expert panel of eight members appointed to decide the fate of the reservoir submitted two different reports, creating further confusion. So, after receiving the contrasting reports of three member professors of IIT - Bombay and four members of architects and local citizens' representatives, the BMC decided to seek a third-party opinion to determine the necessity of the reservoir's repair. The civic team went to Uttarakhand and invited experts from IIT -Roorkee to Mumbai last month.

"Three experts from IIT- Roorkee are expected to visit the MHR on June 3. The team will carry out visual inspection of the reservoir. We have shared the two contrasting reports of our panel and have asked them for recommendations. Based on their conclusion, we will decide our further course of action," said a senior civic official. Zoru Bhathena, an environmental activist and also a part of the Hanging Garden Environmental Protection Group said, "The whole inspection process started after the Malabar hill resident pointed out the fraud in the project. We will try to meet the experts of IIT- Roorkee to put our point."

The final two reports of the expert panel were submitted to the BMC on March 5. While, the expert team from IIT-Bombay recommended construction of a new tank with a usable capacity of 52.44 million liters per day for emptying the existing tank for repairs or reconstruction of the reservoir. The other members of the panel representing citizens have stated that the reservoir does not require demolition or reconstruction for the next 10–15 years as there is no danger of collapse disrupting the water supply.

The reservoir supplies 147 million litres of water per day to south Mumbai. Its reconstruction and augmentation proposal was approved in February 2022 at an estimated cost of Rs698 crore. Locals were up in arms against the project as it would affect 389 fully grown trees.

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