Civic body plans to spend Rs. 10 crore for rain water harvesting pits in public places

Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) is planning to spend Rs. 10 crore to create rain water harvesting (RWH) pits in public places in the city. The corporation will also encourage people’s participation in digging these pits, GHMC North Zone Commissioner S. Hari Krishna said.

When compared to the core city, areas falling in Ranga Reddy district face acute water problem and this problem can be reduced by encouraging rain water harvesting, Mr. Krishna said, while addressing representatives of various residential colonies on Wednesday. More than 40 representatives from United-Federation of Resident Welfare Associations (U-FERWA) participated in the two-hour-long session.

“There is a need for greater public participation in building the pits. Seventy per cent of money will be reimbursed if resident associations take up construction of RWH pits in public places, colonies and apartment complexes,” he said. North zone will concentrate on Alwal and Malkajgiri areas to create maximum harvesting facilities before the advent of monsoon, he said.

U-FERWA representatives shared their experiences and deliberated on the steps that should be taken to address the problem of water scarcity and groundwater depletion. “The basic obstacle in constructing RWH pits is lack of proper space and faulty building plans. GHMC should ensure that building plans incorporate provisions for such facilities,” a delegate said.

Ensure that pits are built in scientific manner so that rain water is not wasted, he said.

“We have two months before the onset of monsoon and this is the time to step up efforts and build water harvesting pits,” Dr. Rao V.B.J. Chelikani of U-FERWA said. Instead of promising reimbursement, authorities should concentrate on creating proper incentives like giving rebates in property tax, he observed.

“Our experience shows that residents get disillusioned when some of them fail to get the money back even after completing the construction of RWH pits. Definite steps like reduction in property tax and other incentives will motivate them better,” he added.

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