Water supply in parts of central Mumbai was affected after a pipeline in Lalbaug burst late Tuesday night. Parel, Lalbaug, Dadar Naigaon, Sewri and Kalachowki areas did not get water supply on Wednesday morning. Officials said they were trying to restore the supply by Thursday morning.
The new Tansa water pipeline — which is about 40 years old and supplies water to Sion, Matunga, Dadar, Parel and Byculla — was ruptured when workers of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC’s) stormwater drainage (SWD) department were carrying out drainage work near Ganesh Gully in Lalbaug. Water supply from 4 am to 7 am was disrupted.
“There was no information about the supply disruption from the BMC. On Wednesday morning, we did not get even a drop of water. We were forced to buy water from tankers. Some of my family members went to a relative’s house in Matunga. If on Thursday the supply is not restored, the problem will aggravate,” Santosh Bhosle, a resident of Parel, said.
An official from the hydraulic engineering (HE) department said: “The SWD department was carrying out micro-tunneling for drainage work… The department has not taken proper precautions. What is surprising is, the micro-tunneling was being done at five metres depth, which is a very shallow surface and at this level, there are so many utilities. The SWD should have contacted the HE department as we have given them maps.”
“There are two pipelines — old Tansa and new Tansa. The tunneling work has damaged the new Tansa pipeline,” he added.
The incident has once again raised questions over the civic body’s long-pending coordination plans for its own departments.
BMC workers started the repair work on the ruptured pipeline on Wednesday morning. Chief Engineer, HE department, Ashok Tawadia, said: “The repair is on and we are aiming to restore the supply by Thursday morning. Our aim is to resume at least low pressure supply. We are facing challenges in the repair work as the micro-tunnelling machine is stuck inside our pipeline and we have asked the SWD department to remove it as soon as possible.”
He said: “We are making alternative arrangements to start the supply immediately, as the repair work will take time.” Shrikant Kawale, the chief engineer of SWD department, was not available for comment.