ZPs can now drill borewells bypassing tender rules

The state government has empowered all Zilla Panchayats to take up drilling of borewells bypassing tender procedure in order to ensure supply of drinking water in the drought-affected places.

The state government has empowered all Zilla Panchayats to take up drilling of borewells bypassing tender procedure in order to ensure supply of drinking water in the drought-affected places.

“ZPs need not even obtain permission from the government or call tender for drilling borewells in the next two months. This is being done to ensure supply of drinking water in the affected places without any delay,” Chief Secretary T M Vijay Bhaskar told reporters.

Normally, ZPs have to follow the tender procedure as per the Karnataka Transparency in Public Procurement Act for drilling borewells. “The drought situation is aggravating. Drinking water scarcity is expected to become acute in coming days. Hence, the government has allowed drilling of borewells bypassing tender procedure. The ZPs will also take necessary steps to electrify the borewells immediately,” he added.

Currently, water is being supplied through tankers to 1,205 villages. As many as 1,393 private borewells have been taken on rent in 1,064 villages. In urban areas, tanker supply is provided in 303 wards. Besides, the government has set up 24/7 control rooms exclusively to resolve issues related to drinking water supply.

Vijay Bhaskar said the government has released Rs 682 crore for taking up various drought-relief measures including setting of fodder bank, cow shelters and supply of drinking water. Currently, Rs 767.27 crore is available with deputy commissioners of all districts, he added. All 176 taluks have been declared as drought hit.

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