June 8: Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) is planning to adopt new schemes in the near future to improve water supply in the city. The intention will be to improve the volume of water supply and provide clean water to more households in the city.
Currently, three agencies — the GMC, water resources department and the public health engineering (PHE) supply water to only 30 per cent of households in the city. The Guwahati Municipal Development Authority (GMDA) is implementing the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) funded water supply project to make clean water available round the clock in every part of the city.
But it will take another year or two to complete these projects. The existing GMC pipes have also undergone much wear and tear and are leaking at several points.
The municipality provides water only for a few hours but water supply also varies. In some areas it is supplied twice a day while in others only once a day.
“We are in the process of introducing several schemes to improve the existent water supply system in the city. The existing piped water connections have outlived their utility and are partially damaged with leakages appearing at different points. As a result, some quantity of the clean treated water that is provided through these pipes leaks out. Therefore, our first priority will be to repair the existing pipes. And if these pipes are found to be irreparable, then we will lay down new pipes to improve efficiency of the water supply system,” said GMC commissioner Puru Gupta.
“We will also install deep tubewells as well as pump sets at different areas in the city. Though we have pump sets, one is utilised to pump in water to several reservoirs. Having additional pump sets will therefore help immensely. Besides, we will also have stand-by pump sets so that they can be utilised if one malfunctions for some reason. This will ensure that the water supply to different households is not disrupted. Our basic aim is to improve the capacity of water supply and cover as many households as possible apart from the existing beneficiaries,” Gupta said.
The municipal authorities have also rued about people drawing piped municipal water through illegal connections.
“There are many instances of theft where people have installed small water pumps in different areas which they illegally connect with the municipal water pipes to draw water. We will also take measures to streamline this so that the residents do not have to suffer for want of water,” Gupta added.