Vijayawada Municipal Corporation to fix water meters for households

The Vijayawada Municipal Corporation (VMC) is contemplating fixing water meters to Household Service Connections (HSCs). The Corporation is coming with new concept: ‘those who consume more should pay more.’

The civic body has been trying to install water meters for the last seven years but not have succeeded in doing so owing to vehement opposition from the consumers. The proposal gained momentum again during the recent visit of a Central team led by Union Urban Development Secretary Sudhir Krishna.

When contacted, Municipal Commissioner C. Hari Kiran said that the VMC was planning to install water meters to HSCs. At present, the meters are there only for the consumers living in apartments. The water tariff, now, is being calculated as per the property tax paid by the consumer. “The water tariff will be as per consumption once the water meters are fixed,” said the Municipal Commissioner, adding that those who consume more should pay more.

The VMC, a year ago, planned to take the number of water meters to 50,000 from the existing 7,885 and provide water connections to all households in the city by March 31, 2013. It had set a target to fix 10,000 water meters in the first phase. At present, there are 1,08,247 HSCs, of which 2,964 are BPL. The total property tax assessments stands at around 1.75 lakh.

Though it could revise the water charges, the Corporation could not go ahead with its plans for various reasons, including political uncertainty, change of guard, and elections.

The Corporation, in the City Development Plan (CDP), has committed to spend Rs.18 lakh in the first year, Rs.29 lakh in second year, Rs.39 lakh in third year, Rs.20 lakh in fourth year, Rs.13 lakh in the fifth year, Rs.6 lakh each in sixth and seventh years for fixing water meters to all domestic connections in addition to the expenditure for metering all connections of bulk consumption.

In the CDP, it has been stated that Rs.1.3 crore would be spent on fixing water meters between 2005 and 2012. The civic body, in 2007, planned to purchase of 2.6 lakh water meters at an estimated cost of Rs.50 crore. However, it could not materialise due to stiff resistance from political parties.

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Printable version | Jun 22, 2021 7:24:20 AM |

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