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Ire over dry water pipes

As many as 40 persons protested outside district collectorate on Monday against delay in executing the Rs 272-crore Bagbera-Govindpur piped water project, which was sanctioned in 2006 but did not progress beyond papers.

Agitators, under the aegis of Sampurna Ghaghidih Vikas Samiti and Bagbera Vikas Samiti, claimed they represented the cause of nearly four lakh residents of Bagbera, Kitadih, Karandih, Parsudih, Ghaghidih and Govindpur.

Protesters also threatened to lock up the Bagbera-based filter house and pumphouse that help supply water to Tatanagar and Jugsalai areas.

“Since 2006, we have held indefinite fasts, padyatras, road blockades and torch rallies. Each time we got verbal assurance. We were assured by the district administration that DPR had been submitted and the tender process would be completed before summer. But, we are left facing acute water crisis,” said samiti convener Subodh Jha.

Residents alleged that the district administration had failed to arrange adequate number of water tankers.

“We had asked for nearly 16 water tankers daily. So far, only four tankers are supplying Jusco water,” added Jha.

President of Samurna Ghaghidih Vikas Samiti Chotrai Murmu said they asked the administration to set up community taps.

East Singhbhum DC Amitabh Kaushal said they would try to arrange more tankers to supply water and inform the state drinking water and sanitation department about the water crisis.

Executive engineer of the department (Jamshedpur division) Suresh Prasad confirmed that the tender process would be held on June 20.

“It will be a global tender as the project is funded by World Bank. We can only know on June 20 if the tender is final or not,” said Prasad.