No in­fra­struc­ture to make STP wa­ter potable: Civic chief

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - G Mo­hi­ud­din Jeddy ht­for­nav­i­mum­bai@hin­dus­tan­times.com

CBD BE­LA­PUR: For years, the rul­ing Na­tion­al­ist Congress Party(NCP) led by for­mer min­is­ter Ganesh Naik has been telling the city that the re­cy­cled wa­ter gen­er­ated from the city’s state of the art Sewage Treat­ment Plants (STP) is of al­most potable qual­ity and will be used for the city’s ben­e­fit and even ex­ploited com­mer­cially.

The op­po­si­tion has reg­u­larly lam­basted it for the de­lay in im­ple­ment­ing the project claim­ing it has al­ways only been an elec­tion gimmick.

Ac­cord­ing to the mu­nic­i­pal com­mis­sioner Di­nesh Wagh­mare, the city still does not have the in­fra­struc­ture to make it potable or even dis­trib­ute it. The cost to do so works out to Rs1,700 crore, which the civic body can­not af­ford.

Speak­ing on the is­sue, Wagh­mare said, “There have been STPs in the city since 1994 with more added later on. We have never used the wa­ter re­cy­cled by them. Just a lit­tle has been used for the NRI colony since re­cently.”

Wagh­mare said, “The wa­ter is not potable. To make it potable, we need ter­tiary treat­ment in the plant. Such a sys­tem in each plant will cost Rs80 crore and since we have 6 STPs, the to­tal cost will be Rs480 crore.”

He added, “There is no dis­tri­bu­tion net­work ei­ther to sup­ply the STP wa­ter to var­i­ous ar­eas of the city. No lines have been laid bar­ring the NRI pipe­line. All wa­ter is drained into the creek.”

“It will cost around Rs200 crore for ev­ery node. For the 6 nodes, the cost will be a whop­ping Rs 1200 crore,” added Wagh­mare.

Wagh­mare said, “Even if we go for such heavy cap­i­tal in­vest­ment, the peo­ple will not be com­fort­able us­ing the wa­ter as it comes from the STP, there is a psy­cho­log­i­cal is­sue. Hence we have no plans for such an in­vest­ment.”

Wagh­mare also added that there is no stor­age fa­cil­ity ei­ther at the city gar­dens to use the STP wa­ter there im­me­di­ately.

Around 15MLD of wa­ter is re­leased in the gar­dens ev­ery­day by the civic per­son­nel, deny­ing the res­i­dents that much fresh wa­ter. In con­trast, 180MLD of treated wa­ter from the sewage treat­ment plants of the city, which can be used in the gar­dens is re­leased in the creek ev­ery day.

Navi Mum­bai is fac­ing a grave wa­ter cri­sis. Morbe dam is re­ported to have stock of wa­ter that will last only till March.

To en­sure that the wa­ter lasts till June, NMMC had ini­ti­ated a 25% wa­ter cut in the city.

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