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Treatment plant adds to water force

A delay in land transfer is apparently obstructing the progress of Patna water supply scheme.

Even after a-year-and-a-half from the commencement of work on the scheme, land has been made available only for 26 of the total 72 overhead tanks proposed under the project to cover the entire city.

The ambitious scheme sanctioned under the centrally sponsored Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) on February 21, 2009, is scheduled to be completed by March next year, which is an extended deadline set by the ministry of urban development for conclusion of the first phase of the mission.

Chief minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday laid the foundation stone for the water treatment plant — an important component of the scheme with an estimated outlay of Rs 170 crore. “People in Patna would be able to get a source of clean drinking water with this scheme,” said Nitish.

However, the progress has been made after a long wait, as the cabinet cleared the transfer of 25 acres at Digha for developing the water treatment plant in November only.

According to sources, the water supply scheme comprises three main components — overhead tanks, network of pipeline and water treatment plant. While the work on development of overhead tanks and treatment plant seems to progress at a snail’s pace, the work related to laying pipelines is also behind schedule.

However, Patna residents would be able to drink the “holy” water of Ganga once the plant is operational. Till now, Patna has always been dependent on ground water for its potable water requirement.

The upcoming water treatment plant would have the capacity to treat 220 million litres per day. It would be connected with clear-water pump houses that would be operational for 22 hours a day and it would be connected to 52 overhead tanks falling north of the Delhi-Howrah railway line.

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