In a move that it claimed would provide relief to residents, especially those living in high-rises, the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) announced that the cap of 10 water connections per building has been done away with. This, the DJB said, would ensure that every resident gets a “legal connection” irrespective of the number of flats or connections in the building.
This was the first board meeting of the DJB under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, since he took over as water minister.
In 2015, the DJB raised the cap on the number of connections per building from six to 10. But officials said this didn’t solve the problem as buildings no longer restricted themselves to 10 flats. This also led to a number of housing projects getting stuck, the officials added.
“As a result, residents had to resort to other means to get water — either through illegal connections or sharing one connection. This also made tenants vulnerable to exploitation by landlords,” an official said.
In a statement, the Jal Board said, “There are several buildings in Delhi that have more than 10 flats… Thus, it was decided to do away with the cap to make sure every resident get a legal connection irrespective of the number of flats/connections in the building.”
While boosting the DJB’s revenue, officials said the move is also likely to ensure better supply of water. “When the same connection is split between more than one flat, the multiple perforations lead to a dip in the force, impacting the overall supply,” the official added.
The Delhi government has also cleared the setting up of 93 decentralised STPs, while also approving Rs 10.49 crore for setting up hydro power projects — likely to generate 397 KW power every year.
“The Board also approved water audit through flow meters. These would be installed at various points to measure and check leakage, unauthorised tapping, etc. The total budget approved for the audit is Rs 222 crore,” an official said.
Board approves land for 348 mohalla clinics
The Jal Board also gave in-principle approval to 348 mohalla clinics at different DJB locations, officials said. The issue of land for mohalla clinics — a flagship AAP project — has been at the heart of a controversy, with AAP repeatedly accusing the DDA and its chairman, L-G Anil Baijal, of scuttling their efforts to set up the clinics by denying them land. Baijal finally gave his nod to set up the clinics, with some “safeguards”, earlier this month.