Today's Paper

Coimbatore Corporation to seek waiver of Siruvani arrears

K.V. Prasad



The civic body owes over Rs. 80 crore to TWAD Board

Corporation has to pay Rs. 3 crore a year to Kerala as royalty



COIMBATORE: With a feeling of immense relief after the recent waiver of Rs. 63 crore loan dues to the State Government, the Coimbatore Corporation is preparing to seek soon the waiver of over Rs. 80 crore it owes to the Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage (TWAD) Board as arrears under the Siruvani drinking water scheme.

The Corporation had already been considering such a request when the waiver of loan dues had been announced in the Assembly some months ago.

With the waiver done recently, the Corporation is ready with its special request to write off the Siruvani arrears.

“We admit that the arrears have been piling up every year. But it may not be possible for us to pay such a huge sum,” Mayor R. Venkatachalam says.

Request

Corporation sources say that the civic body had first wanted to get the Rs. 63 crore dues written off to prevent its request for waiving more than Rs. 80 crore from being rejected by the Government straightaway.

It is not that the Corporation has not brought this issue to the notice of the Governemnt so far. But, the Mayor indicates that a fervent appeal will be made to the Government to give special attention to the Corporation’s problems with regard to the Siruvani scheme.

The civic body’s argument is that when water from the Siruvani hills flow through gravity up to the city, there it need not pay huge sums as water and maintenance charges to the TWAD Board.



Quota

The civic body pays Rs.12 crore a year for Siruvani water to the board. When the dam is full, the Corporation gets almost its full quota of 87 million litres a day. It comes down to 50 or even less when the storage dips.

With the Corporation having to pay Rs. 3 crore a year to Kerala as royalty because of the dam being located in that State, the civic body feels that a waiver of the arrears will bring substantial relief to it at a time when it needs to mobilise funds for various development projects, including an additional drinking water scheme.

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