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BBMP livid over BWSSB's fine on residents without occupancy cert

Poornima Nataraj, Bengaluru, DH News Service, Dec 7 2017, 23:20 IST

Imposing of penalty on residents without an Occupancy Certificate (OC) by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board has created consternation in the Palike.

The BWSSB has imposed a penalty on over 3,000 consumers in the city.

Corporators at BBMP recently protested over the BWSSB's method of augmenting the water bill with extra charges, even as board officials explained that they are only following the regulations brought in after a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in 2014. The regulations had been amended in February 2016.

BWSSB chief engineer (maintenance) H M Ravindra said the board had written to the BBMP several times to clarify the applicability of regulations making the OC mandatory.

"We wanted a clear idea on how the regulation can be implemented and from whom a copy of the OC has to be collected for sanctioning water connections," Ravindra said.

"Although the regulation gives a fair idea on the slabs, we wanted the BBMP to clarify on the issuance of the OC, but till date, the Palike has not replied to our correspondence," he added.

City residents, especially those living in residential complexes, do not possess an OC as it is either still with the builder or the builder did not receive it from the relevant agency. As a result, the residents as left with a hefty water bill.

Raghavendra Prasad, who lives in an apartment in Kengeri, does not have an OC despite living there for over a decade. "We managed to get Cauvery water supply, but we still do not have the OC as it is still with the builder," he said. "Now, we are slapped with additional charges."

BBMP Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad said the issue is not about the penalty, crackdown on illegal constructions or issuing the OC. "We will have a joint meeting on December 11 to discuss various issues faced by both the BBMP and the BWSSB," he said.


What the regulation says

BWSSB is charging 50% additional water charges from residential and 100% from commercial buildings having ground +2 floors for not producing occupancy certificate

Exemption is given to buildings having only ground +2 floors

The board is providing temporary water connection to new buildings that are yet to receive the OC by collecting penalty charges

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