March 1, 2021 8:15:02 am
During an executive committee meeting of FOSWAC on Sunday, the Resident Welfare Associations in the city demanded to know why couldn’t Chandigarh replicate New Delhi’s model of water supply to households.
The FOSWAC (Federation of Sectors Welfare Association Chandigarh) meeting was held at Sector 35, Chandigarh under the chairmanship of Baljinder Singh Bittu. The meeting was attended by more than a hundred members from various RWAs.
J S Gogia, General Secretary, sounded the bugle on the issue of increase in rates of petrol, diesel, gas, transportation, logistics as well as hike in rates of water and its impact on the everyday life of citizens.
Chairman Baljinder Singh Bittu said that the hefty increase in water tariff along with sewerage cess is highly condemnable, adding that autocracy has seemingly overruled democracy in the UT. “To add fuel to the fire, everyday increase in gas, diesel, and petrol prices is making it very difficult, for a common man to make both ends meet,” Bittu said.
He further said that despite tall claims made by the Member Parliament Kirron Kher, the Chandigarh Administration and the Municipal Corporation the garbage mountain in Dadu Majra has been worsening by the day.
Adding that the authorities had failed miserably in removing the garbage mountain and containing the frequent fires in the garbage, he said, “the obnoxious gases emitting foul smell and toxic fumes are very harmful for the health of city residents specially the old, children, and asthmatic patients.”
Pankaj Gupta, chief spokesperson, said that recent increase in gas and water bills are higher by 30 per cent to which R S Gill from Sector 8 added that MC intends to recover Rs 500 crore from the water bills over a period of time without any value addition. He further apprised that residents are being charged for tertiary water without any supply for the last three years.
Many members sought to know if New Delhi could supply free water to two crore citizens, why could the Chandigarh MC not replicate the same model. “The fact remains that living cost has gone exorbitantly high during Covid- 19 times, while the earning of common man has gone down drastically,” said Pardeep Chopra from Sector 21.
“The increase in rates of diesel has a direct bearing on the logistics and transportation of all items and its impact is around10-12 per cent increase in cost. If you add another 10-12 per cent increasing inflation, you will end up paying at least 25 per cent more on all items you buy. It is pertinent to note that the rates of the grocery items have already increased by 30-40 per cent during the year, making the life of a common man miserable,” said JS Gogia.
In the second half, Debendra Dalai, IFS and CEO ‘CREST’ along with his team joined the meeting to emphasise and inspire the RWAs to come
forward to install solar systems.
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