June 7, 2012 2:57:33 am
With work on the Middle Vaitarna Dam nearing completion,the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) should ideally start work on its next dam project in the near future.
However,confusion over whether the civic body will be taking up the Pinjal project or the Gargai project first has caused long delays. The BMC will finally begin work on the Gargai project in 2014. A primary feasibility report on the project is yet to be submitted,almost two years after a consultant was appointed.
On completion,the dam will provide an additional 455 million litres of water to the city daily. The BMC has now set fresh deadlines for the project since the Pinjal river dam will be taken over by the Central government as part of the Damanganga-Pinjal river linkage plan. The civic body has set a deadline of February 2018 for completion of the dam.
We have asked for work to be expedited and hope to submit the first feasibility report by December 2012. Environmental clearances for the project are yet to be obtained and a deadline of December 2013 is set for the same. After this,work will begin in 2014, said R Hardas,chief engineer (water supply projects). When work on the project was first taken up in 2009,it cost Rs 2,720 crore.
Since 7.5 square kilometres of the dam area falls in the Tansa Wildlife Sanctuary,the BMC will have to obtain environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF). A Delhi-based consultant,Green Sea,was appointed in 2010 to get the environmental clearances but that has not happened so far.
An environment impact assessment report will be submitted by NEERI (National Environmental Engineering Research Institute) to the MoEF for clearances.
Meanwhile,civic officials admitted that despite completion of the Middle Vaitarna dam in record time,only 65 per cent of the dam capacity will be used this monsoon. Hundred per cent completion of work will be achieved only by April 2013.
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