Delay causes crisis in parched illegal colony, Sangam Vihar.
New Delhi: One of the main reasons why New Delhi’s Sangam Vihar has perennially remained a parched area, with water wars erupting often is that it comes under the Ridge and laying water pipelines requires permission.
It has been over a year that a proposal to lay pipelines in one of the largest unauthorised colonies has been submitted with the Ridge Management Board. However, it is still under consideration, leading to severe water crisis in the colony.
“Pipelines require permission as the area comes under the Ridge. The Delhi Jail Board (DJB) sends the proposal to the Ridge Management Board and they pursue it,” said AAP MLA from Sangam Vihar and DJB vice chairman Dinesh Mohaniya.
As per rules, the Ridge board has to prepare a feasibility report on the land requires, the number of trees to be cut, and the loss of Ridge cover and submit it to the Supreme Court, which then gives the permission to start the work of laying of pipelines. But there has been no progress on the last proposal sent by DJB so far and the matter is stuck since then.
“The proposal is still under consideration. Also, since the area in the colony is not officially defined, Ridge or non-Ridge, it is difficult to lay pipelines even in areas, which do not affect the forest cover. We sat with the revenue department and the Ridge Management Board and discussed a demarcation between Ridge and non-Ridge areas so that work can at least start in some blocks,” said Mr Mohaniya.
Recently, the DJB had received approval to start the work of laying pipelines in at least six such blocks which did not come under Ridge. “The proposal and estimate is being prepared and the tender will be done in next few months for these six blocks,” he said.
Sangam Vihar in South-East Delhi is one of the largest unauthorised colonies in Asia and has been prone to water crisis. At present, people rely on tankers, tube-wells, bore wells, and public hydrants for their water needs as the state government has failed to piped drinking water to this neighbourhood that houses a population of over 1.5 million residents.
On June 14, the colony witnessed the murder of a 45-year-old man over a dispute that broke out over the laying of a piped water connection.
Mr Mohaniya said while the main pipeline has been laid already last year, no work has started on the interconnecting pipelines, which will provide water to different blocks from the main one.