Many local residents blame the ‘tanker lobby’ in their area.
It is only December and yet water tankers have begun making rounds of various residential areas in Pimpri-Chinchwad. The state government records, however, reflect no such information.
As per the latest Weekly Water Tanker report, issued on December 9, by the Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, only one village in Vidarbha’s Buldhana district has so far made use of water tankers since the end of monsoon. The report that gives information of tankers, supplied by government and private players, mentions no other region using water tankers.
This year, Maharashtra recorded large surplus rainfall during and after monsoon. The water availability in Pavana dam, the sole supplier to the two towns, was at 92.56 per cent amounting to 7.88 TMC as on Friday.
With areas under the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) receiving water supply only once in two days, there is an increasing demand of tankers. As the prices of water tankers are already climbing, residents fear the worst before summer sets in.
Areas with major shortage of water include recently developed Wakad, Pimple Saudagar, Pimple Nilakh and new Sangvi, which have large housing societies, with some of them housing over 1,000 apartments.
Since November, PCMC has been releasing drinking water only on alternate days. On some occasions, residents said, water was supplied only for two hours in two days.
“We need at least five tankers every alternate day and our society expenses have become higher in the last few days,” said a member of Saiwoods Housing Society in Pimple Saudagar.
Many local residents blame the “tanker lobby” in the area, alleging that floating charges were applied on tankers.
“The price of tankers range from Rs 900 to Rs 2,000 in the same locality. We don’t understand this large difference in cost for the same quantity of water,” said Mugdha Sreekumar, a resident of Wakad annexe.