Chandigarh policemen were among the biggest violators in a water conservation drive started by the UT’s civic body. The ban on wasting water, which was started on April 15 this year, concluded Sunday. Majority of the challans issued during this period were from Police Lines in Sector 26, Chandigarh, and a hefty fine was imposed on them.
The UT civic body constituted as many as 20 teams to check water wastage in the city during this period. Officials of Public Health Wing under Municipal Corporation informed that as many as 30 challans were issued in Police Lines for using water pumps. “They connected water motors directly to water supply pipes. It is for this reason that a fine was imposed on them,” a senior official of the civic body said on the condition of anonymity.
A fine of Rs 5,000 each was imposed in all cases of violations in Police Lines, while others challaned faced a penalty of Rs 2,000 each. In all, the civic body issued 125 challans during the drive, including the challans of Police Lines. Apart from the challans, 1,200 notices were issued to residents for violations like fixing of leakage . Other such violations were found mostly in southern sectors.
“This fine will be recovered through water bills of violators,” the official added.
Superintendent of Police (SP) under Chandigarh Police, on the basis of information conveyed by the MC, told offending policemen in Sector 26 to remove these booster pumps or else face departmental action.
Various violations during this ban included washing of vehicles and courtyards, watering of lawns, overflow from overhead or underground water tanks, leakage from water metre chamber, leakage and overflow from desert cooler, installation and use of booster pumps directly on water supply line and wastage due to non-installation of bib taps.
At present, UT gets 85 million gallons daily (MGD) of water. Of this, about 58 MGD comes from Phases I, II, III and IV of Kajauli waterworks, while the remaining 27 MGD is generated through 250 tubewells. As of now, the demand for water has gone up to 116 MGD and a gap in demand and supply has arisen. The situation is likely to be improved once Chandigarh receives additional 29 MGD of water from phase V and VI of the Kajauli waterworks.
However, if civic body is unable to check the water imbalance in the city, even this additional 29 MGD of water won’t suffice.
A study by the Public Health Wing of the MC found that imbalance of consumption of water in sectors was another key reason of water scarcity in the city. A study in 2013 found that residents of northern sectors used over 1,000 litre of water per person per day against a national norm of 135 litre per person per day. The officials found that all posh sectors used between 934 litre to 1,376 litre of water per person per day.
Residents of sectors like 2,3,4,5 and 9, drew more than 1,000 litres of water per person per day. Large size of houses and presence of lawns contributed to this heightened demand for water.
On the other hand, consumption of water in southern sectors was found to be relatively lesser. Water consumption in Sector 56 was nearly 138 litre per person per day.