June 11, 2012 1:58:29 am
Every drop of water counts,and the Municipal Corporation is trying to drive this point home to every resident in its current campaign to check water wastage. In the process,the civic body has issued 424 challans since April 15 when the drive started,and earned revenue of Rs 8.5 lakh Rs 2,000 per challan.
The amount is substantial,going by last years figures when only two challans were issued. Then the amount of fine was just Rs 500.
The civic body undertakes this drive every year from April 15 till June-end. While thousands of notices are issued every year,it is for the first time that so many challans have been issued. In 2010,the number of challans was 52 while 16 people were fined in 2009.
Behind the change in stance of the civic body is the idea of deterrence. We have issued more than 400 challans so that it acts as a deterrent for the residents and they do not waste water. Instead of wasting water on washing cars and watering lawns,it is essential that the basic requirements of the residents are fulfilled, says Superintending Engineer (Public Health) R C Diwan.
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The fine is added to the water and electricity bills. Officials claim that the defaulters prefer to pay the fine on the spot rather than getting it added to their bills.
During summer,14 teams of the Municipal Corporation conduct checks in different sectors. In case residents are found washing cars or courtyards using a hose pipe,watering their lawns,or water is found overflowing from tanks,either notices are served or challans are issued.
Chandigarh receives 87 million gallons daily (mgd) of water against the peak-time requirement of 116 mgd. Residents complain about low water pressure,especially on upper storeys. The afternoon supply of water has been stopped in order to improve water supply during morning and evening.
The civic body is,however,yet to keep a check on the 24 per cent transmission and distribution losses. With both the Punjab and Haryana governments at loggerheads over the issue of water,getting additional water supply for the city in the coming years seems unlikely.
Officials claim the complaint centre set up for tackling the problems pertaining to water supply receives three to four complaints a day. More than 60 complaints were received on the day the centre was set up. The proposal of the civic body to install nine boosters to ensure better supply has been hanging fire,with the UT Administration not approving the sites for the purpose.
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