The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will ink agreement with Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) on Monday over the supply of drinking water for 24 hours, Mayor Sovan Chatterjee said on Thursday.
The ADB will provide a loan of Rs 1,200 crore.
Two officials of ADB on Thursday met Chatterjee at KMC headquarters on SN Banerjee Road and discussed the matter.
Chatterjee and the ADB officials also discussed about the setting up of a solid waste management plant at Rajarhat by KMC on a 20 acre plot of land given by the Urban Development department.
The ADB officials asked the Mayor to submit a DPR of the project by July, 2017.
Steps would be taken to supply round the clock drinking water in Behala, parts of Jadavpur and Joka where three wards have come under KMC, taking the total number of wards to 144. Also round the clock supply will be given to Cossipur-Belgachia area which comes under wards 1 to 6. The supply of water in the remaining parts of the city will be increased to 12 hours instead of present six hours. The capacity of the booster pumping stations would be enhanced and the distribution system would be upgraded.
It may be mentioned that Chatterjee was the Mayor in council in charge of water (2000-05) when the then mayor Subrata Mukherjee took ADB loan to augment the supply of filtered water to the city. The Kalighat booster water pumping station was set up which covered vast areas in eastern fringes like Kasba, Haltu and its neighbourhood.
After becoming the Mayor in 2010, Chatterjee’s topmost priority was augmentation of filtered water to the city. There were some pockets in Behala that had faced drinking water crisis for several decades.
But the problem has been ironed out after the supply capacity of Garden Reach water works was augmented and booster station in Behala was set up.
The Garden Reach water works which was under Kolkata Metropolitan Water and sanitation Authority (KMWSA) came under KMC for better management.
The ADB insisted that KMC should impose water tax which KMC declined as it is the declared policy of the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee that no water tax can be imposed.
The funding authority asked the civic authorities to restructure the revenue collection system. The KMC has prepared the Unit Area Assessment (UAA) which is likely to be introduced shortly. This is likely to augment revenue collection of KMC and will remove all the discrepancy over fixing property tax.
Once the water distribution system is upgraded, the supply of filtered water will go up. KMC officials said steps would be taken to stop wastage of water. It has been calculated that around 10mg of filter water is wasted either through leaks on the pipeline or otherwise.
The KMC is also planning to install water meters to calculate the water required per family. A pilot project in the matter will be carried out in Behala where 24-hour water supply will be given.