Delhi Water Minister announces Jal Adhikar Connections for slum dwellers

With a view to benefitting residents of the city, Delhi Water Minister Kapil Mishra on Monday announced a slew of measures, including introduction of 'Jal Adhikar Connections' for slum dwellers and 100 per cent waiver of late payment surcharge for all commercial consumers totalling Rs 1,100 crore.

"Water is a basic right for all, so Delhi Jal Board today (Monday) passed Jal Adhikar Connection policy for Jhuggi Jhopri dwellers. It will be a new category which will provide new legal water connections to people who live in slums," Mishra said addressing a press conference.

The decisions were taken at the 128th meeting of Delhi Jal Board which was chaired by Mishra.

Mishra said that denial of legal connection to an applicant not only increases Non Revenue Water (NRW) but also damages the pipelines because of the unscientific tapping.

"There are around 500 slums in Delhi. Till now we used to provide community tapping in every slum but this new policy will make it extremely easier for slum dwellers to get individual water connections," Mishra said.

He said that there are thousands of commercial connections in Delhi and DJB has to get around Rs 1,900 crore as outstanding from commercial consumers.

"Taking a big step we have decided to completely waive off the late payment surcharge (LPSC) of the commercial consumers worth Rs 1,100 crore. This scheme will be valid for three months. Commercial consumers' LPSC will be waived off if they pay principal amount of the bill before three months," Mishra said.

He said that with this scheme DJB will get Rs 750 crore.

"There were thousands of commercial consumers who were not able to pay their water bills because of LPSC but now they will be able to pay the bill. This is a histotic decision," Mishra said.

Mishra also said that small hotels and restaurants in Delhi would receive LPSC waiver on sewerage charges. This move will benefit to help hundreds of hoteliers and restaurateurs in the city.

Mishra informed the media that DJB has also decided to renew water bodies and recycle and reuse water by forming three executive divisions to execute rejuvenation.

Giving a thrust to Delhi government's 'Clean Yamuna' mission, Mishra said that the DJB would construct a water treatment plant at Coronation Pillar in north Delhi.

"DJB will construct 70 MGD Waste Water Treatment Plant at Coronation Pillar; which is the single biggest and cheapest plant to clean River Yamuna with advanced features of BOD-10, Ammonia and Phosphate removal and sludge management," Mishra added.