Water usage exceeding 20k litre/month to cost more
New Delhi: The Delhi Jal Board (DJB) on Tuesday approved a combined 20 percent hike in water and sewer charges in the national capital for consumption above 20,000 litres a month.
However, the DJB will not charge households consuming up to 20,000 litres a month, in line with the subsidy scheme of the Arvind Kejriwal government, which was a key poll promise of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), an official said.
The new rates will come into force in February 2018.
In 2015, days after coming to power, the AAP government had hiked water tariff by 10 percent for consumers falling in the same category, keeping with an annual automatic 10 percent rate hike mechanism put in place by the Sheila Dikshit government in 2009.
However, in 2016, the government decided against following the auto mechanism and put another hike on hold.
The current hike comes three months after Kejriwal took over the ministerial portfolio of water after the removal of Kapil Mishra.
It will effectively lead to a rise of Rs 28 per month for consumers crossing the 20,000 litres limit, DJB vice chairman Dinesh Mohaniya, who is the AAP MLA from Sangam Vihar, said.
"No change in water tariff in Delhi for households using up to 20,000 litres per month for the third consecutive year.
Above 20,000 litres, a 20 percent combined hike on water and sewer charges approved in the Delhi Jal Board meeting," Delhi government spokesperson Nagendar Sharma tweeted.
The DJB has been providing up to 20,000 litres of water free of charge to domestic consumers.
For domestic users who consume between 20,000 litres and 30,000 litres of water per month, the service charge is Rs 219.62, and the volumetric cost is Rs 21.97 per 1,000 litres.
Customers who use over 30,000 litres a month pay Rs 292.82 in service charge and Rs 36.61 per 1,000 litres in volumetric charge.
The Opposition slammed the government for this decision. Delhi BJP president Manoj Tiwari and other leaders met the Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal regarding the issue and called it "irresponsible". Meanwhile, the Delhi PCC Chief Ajay Maken said that the Delhi Government had been systematically breaking all its election promises.