City drained of water: Oppn slams BBMP for crisis

City drained of water: Oppn slams BBMP for crisis

Corporators discuss the water crisis in the city during the BBMP council meeting on Saturday. DH PHOTO/ KRISHNAKUMAR P S

Opposition leaders at the BBMP council came down heavily on the civic body for not taking appropriate measures to help tide over the water crisis in the city.

They rallied against the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) as it failed to take steps despite being aware of the model code of conduct in place prior to the Lok Sabha elections.

“BBMP and BWSSB officials, when asked about the water crisis, cite code of conduct for not moving files or floating tenders,” said Padmanabha Reddy, opposition leader at the council.

D Randeep, special commissioner (Solid Waste Management), said the BBMP is waiting for the decision to be officially communicated by the Urban Development Department. “This may be confirmed by Monday or later, then the BBMP shall call for short term tenders,” he said.

He also said the Election Commission of India’s model code of conduct does not hold good for the water crisis in the city, as access to water is an essential service.

Power failure is one of the main reasons for irregular water supply, the opposition leaders said. “There is no cooperation between the BWSSB and BESCOM. Whenever there is power supply, there is no water and vice versa. The BWSSB should have called for short term tenders by now but nothing has happened so far,” added Reddy.

It was emphasised in the meeting that the water crisis is severe in 110 villages under the BBMP that depend only on borewells for water. “The BWSSB is yet to complete the pipeline and UGD works at 110 villages. We don’t know when the water will be supplied,” said M Anjinappa, the Begur corporator. The corporators of Bellandur and Yelahanka said there is an acute crisis in their wards.

But some corporators argued the crisis is very much there in other areas besides the 110 villages. They wanted to know why the BBMP is focussing only in the 110 villages.

Suresh P, additional chief engineer, BWSSB, claimed the power interruption has been drastically reduced over the past few days after BWSSB submitted a letter to BESCOM.

Meanwhile, with the single judge bench of the high court quashing a BBMP order banning all outdoor advertising for one year, opposition leaders said if banners are back it would dent the beauty of Bengaluru, condemning the move.