ROURKELA: Not all households under Rourkela Municipal Corporation (RMC) limits have provision for water supply though the city has the natural resource in abundance.
Against Rourkela city’s daily requirement of 40.07 MLD (million litres per day), PHED supplies 47.9 MLD with its available infrastructure. Though it is capable of supplying 77 MLD, the city lacks proper distribution network.
Though the Congress-led UPA-II and BJP-led NDA governments made provisions under Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT) and Atal Mission for Renewal and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) respectively, the projects are running behind schedule.
UPA-II had sanctioned above `77 crore under UIDSSMT towards the end of its term to provide 24-hour water supply to the remaining households in the city. Sources said RMC (then municipality) had received about `36 crore in March 2014 and it was transferred to the executing agency, Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED), about six months back. But, tender for the project was cancelled two months ago and retendering is likely to take place next month. The delay is likely to escalate the cost by another `10 crore.
Executive engineer, PHED, Alok Patel said the tender was cancelled due to higher premium and fresh tenders will be called in March to complete the project by March 2018. The Detailed Project Report (DPR) envisages to cover about 23,000 uncovered households of slums and colonies in 11 zones including Tisco area, Chhend Colony, Civil Township, Basanti Colony, Koelnagar, Old Station and slums of Gopabandhupali, Bondamunda, Deogaon, Rooptola and Timber Colony.
Supply network will be improved with independent feeder lines, ground reservoirs and overhead tanks at needy areas on a priority basis. However, UIDSSMT will not cover Jagda and Jhartarang gram panchayats (GPs) and Nabakrushnanagar that were included in RMC 25 months ago.
RMC Commissioner DP Mohapatra said water supply provisions to the newly included areas would be met through AMRUT (Atal Mission for Renewal and Urban Transformation) scheme.
If everything goes as expected, water supply to Jagda GP under AMRUT scheme will start in April, while Jhartarang GP and Nabakrushnanagar have to wait till March 2018 and March 2017 respectively.
Rourkela District Congress Committee (RDCC) president Biren Senapati said the Chief Minister should ensure timely completion of pending projects instead of blindly laying foundations for new projects.