TAKING SERIOUS note of the water shortage at the Lohegaon Air Force Station, the state government rapped the civic body officials at a civil-defence liaison meeting that was conducted last week.
In a video conference conducted under chief secretary Swadeen Kshatriya, in the presence of civic and district administration officials, the chief secretary directed the civic body to address the issue at the earliest.
The Air Force Station has requested for 22 lakh gallons of water but they have been receiving very less water supply for the last two years and have sent out letters demanding the civic body to address the issue.
However, the civic officials said they were helpless as water needs to be supplied to the residential areas and only after the Bhama Asked dam work is completed, can they provide additional water supply to the Air Force station.
Defence sources said that the current daily water requirement of the Air Force Station is around 22 lakh gallons but since last few years, the PMC has been releasing just around five lakh gallons per day, which is less than one fourth of the requirement.
“The PMC officials say that there is a water shortage and they will look into the matter. However, nothing has been done till now. We are asking basic requirement. This water is needed for the daily functioning of the station, including that of the critical establishments,” said an officer on condition of anonymity.
Another officer said, “The defence authorities have sought water from the Bhama Askhed Dam line but the PMC has not given any positive response on that yet. The water requirement of the Air Force Station is for the basic necessities like daily operations of the hangers, various workshops and daily needs of the residential area and operational area.”
PMC water supply head VG Kulkarni said, “In the present scenario, it is not possible to give the Air Force Station this additional water supply as the water is needed for the residential areas of the city. However, once the Bhama Asked project is completed by around June 2017, we can look into giving them water as the line passes from that side.” However, he added that the defence officials are not even giving permissions for laying the pipelines on their roads and if they give the permissions, the work can be completed within the set deadline and the water can be provided. “We have had several meetings on the same issue and if they give us the permissions, the work can be hastened,” said Kulkarni.
Meanwhile, a senior official from the water department who was present at the meeting said, the chief secretary had rapped the officials for delaying the requests and had asked to look into the matter at the earliest.
Explaining the issue, he said they have repeatedly told the Air Force officials to give details of their requirement as it would amount to almost 10 MLD of water, which in the present situation, was not possible to give as the city would face a shortage.
The Bhama Asked pipeline is supposed to bring about respite to the areas of Kharadi, Wadgaonsheri areas.