Mumbai Local

HC tells State to monitor water levels in dams

Work half done:Silt piled up by the roadside in Bhandup.—Photo: Special Arrangement

Work half done:Silt piled up by the roadside in Bhandup.—Photo: Special Arrangement  

Asks government to appoint new water regulatory body in a week

The Bombay High Court on Tuesday directed the State water authorities to constantly monitor water levels in all the dams to ensure availability of drinking.

A vacation bench of Justices B.R. Gavai and Justice Shalini Phansalkar-Joshi was hearing a bunch of petitions highlighting the drought condition, and lack of drinking water in various parts of the State, which is reeling under a drought for the third consecutive year.

The court was informed that terms of the members of Maharashtra Water Resources Regulatory Authority (MWRRA) have expired, and therefore, the body is now defunct.

The High Court ordered the State to appoint a new water regulatory authority within a week to monitor water levels in the dams from time to time.

When the court was told that the water is being held by certain private bodies and entities, the court said, “Natural resources such as water is the property of the nation as a whole, and do not belong to any individual. These resources must not be diverted for other purpose.”

To deal with the extreme summers in the State, the court has asked the government to ensure that a special ward is created in all district hospitals to provide treatment to people who suffer heat strokes.

The court has also directed the district collectors and the State to ensure that water is not supplied for any construction activities in all the drought-hit areas, and priority should be given to the supply of drinking water.

Acting advocate general Rohit Deo said that only potable water is being supplied to people in drought hit areas through tankers.

He also said that under the Jal Yukt Shivar scheme, water is stored in ponds for personal consumption.

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2020 1:12:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/news/hc-tells-state-to-monitor-water-levels-in-dams/article8643476.ece

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