BENGALURU: Even as the Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) has booked 1,891 apartment buildings with 20 flats or more last month for not installing Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs), it has also written to the Environment and Forest department and the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) for relaxation of the rule.
Speaking to Express, Engineer-in-Chief Kemparamaiah said, “The BWSSB had levied a penalty amount of Rs 75,75,472 in October on 1,891 property owners who had not installed the mandatory STPs and facilities for reuse of the treated water.”
The penalty now collected followed these norms — an additional 25% on water bill for three months in case of domestic users and 50% to the bill for commercial users, if the STP is not installed even after three months, then 50% of the bill would be levied on domestic users and 100% on commercial users.
“There has been stiff opposition to the move from the public during meetings held by the board to listen to grievances. They are insisting that the earlier provision that apartments with 50 units and above install STPs be retained and the 20-unit rule be relaxed,” the EIC said.
Kemparamaiah said that the reasoning repeatedly stated by public was that apartments lacked sufficient space for an STP. “STPs come in various sizes but the space required would approximately be equivalent to a car parking slot,” he said.
Installation of an STP could cost anywhere between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 6 lakh. Many also objected to the price, he added.
“The BWSSB has written to the Forest department and the KSPCB conveying the objections raised and asking them if there could be a reconsideration of the move,” Kemparamaiah said.