The Opposition BJP on Monday alleged that the water tariff in Delhi had been hiked by as much as 1,000 per cent and hence the party would make water supply reforms its major plank in the upcoming Delhi Assembly polls.
Over the past year, the BJP had organised several protests against the public-private partnership (PPP) model of water distribution network here.
“Water and power will be the key issues on which the BJP will contest the Assembly elections. The party will soon release a White Paper on the ‘state of water’ in Delhi,” said Delhi BJP chief Vijay Goel.
The BJP leader alleged that 40 per cent of the state capital’s denizens did not have direct access to drinking water provided by the Delhi Jal Board. And he flayed the Sheila Dikshit-led Congress Government over its failure to provide water connection to all residents despite having been in power for 15 years.
“It is shocking to see that despite increasing the water tariff by as much as 1,000 per cent in the last 15 years, the DJB has illegally inflated water bills by 30 per cent.
“The current water tariff rate in Delhi is already very high and the CAG has observed that it is nine times over and above that in Mumbai,” said Goel.
The BJP had alleged that Delhiites had been handed over water bills running into lakhs of rupees as a result of the faulty water meters installed by the private companies. Delhi produces around 835 million gallons per day (MGD) of water, which is around 300 MGD short of the actual demand.
“The Chief Minister’s biggest failure in ensuring water supply has been to get Haryana to release 80 MGD from the Munak canal. (As a result) three finished water treatment plants in Delhi still await water and thousands of people in the state get practically no water or (water) barely once daily,” said Goel.
The Delhi government had introduced the public-private partnership in water distribution claiming that it would help to improve the water supply, stop massive wastage of water due to leaking pipelines and ensure correct billing. According to the BJP, the PPP model had only aggravated the water woes.