DJB spanner: can’t lay sewer pipelines

As if hurdles from civic bodies such as the ASI and Forest department are not enough,the Delhi Jal Board has also thrown a spanner in the government’s plans to regularise unauthorised colonies.

Written by Sobhana K | New Delhi | Published:February 22, 2009 12:32 am

As if hurdles from civic bodies such as the ASI and Forest department are not enough,the Delhi Jal Board has also thrown a spanner in the government’s plans to regularise unauthorised colonies. The Jal Board maintains that it can provide sewage lines to only 253 colonies of 1,639 colonies that had received provisional certificate ahead of the Assembly elections last November.  

The DJB also says that water supply will be limited only to 1,100 colonies till 2010.

This would be a major hurdle in the process of regularisation as the Supreme Court,during hearing of a PIL on February 11,2006,had ordered that these colonies can be granted permanent regularisation certificate only after all infrastructure is in place. The apex court had later also taken objection to the government’s move to distribute provisional regularisation certificates ahead of the Assembly polls.

“The court order clearly states that the colonies cannot be regularised unless sewerage,water supply,power and other amenities are provided,” advocate Jasbir Singh Malik,who is fighting the PIL,said.

The Delhi Jal Board has pointed out two main problems in providing sewer lines to these colonies: First,most of these colonies do not have a peripheral trunk sewer; second,there is not enough water available.

“There is no peripheral trunk sewer in most of these colonies to connect sewer pipelines from the houses. We will make a masterplan soon for the other colonies,” Jal Board CEO Ramesh Negi said.

Of 253 colonies in the first phase,the DJB has identified 132; while work is in progress in 45 others,tenders are being issued for 14 colonies. Estimates are being prepared for 20 colonies and sewer lines exist in 26. In fact,even among 567 colonies authorised back in 1981,only 523 have got sewer connection till date.

The DJB is at present mulling on setting up decentralised system of cleaning sewer water closer to source,rather than set up more sewage treatment plants that are expensive. The budget for rest of the colonies has not been worked out yet.

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