PIPELINE BLOCKED – Pune cantonment’s sewage project runs into roadblock

PMC Dispute, Negative Surveys Throw Spanner In The Works
The Pune Cantonment Board’s (PCB) ambitious sewage system overhaul in the Camp has hit a hurdle due to negative surveys and disputes with the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC).The eastern reaches of the Cantonment are often waterlogged during the monsoon. Surveys have blamed the old sewage system in the area. Unclean drains passing through the neighbourhood have also been held responsible.

In 2015, the PCB approved a plan which was stuck for a couple of years due to fund crunch and non-availability of land. The plan was specifically designed to benefit the Ghorpadi and Wanowrie localities, while the rest of Camp’s drainage system was already revamped, with a sewage treatment plant under construction in the Bootee Street area.

The refurbishment plan was to receive funding from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) as the board was no minated for the `smart cantonments’ project. The initial module had provisions for new sewer lines through the area which would end up at two sewage treatment plants. The treated sewage would have been released into the Bhairobha nalla.

The board also appointed a consultant to identify land for the purpose. But initial reports have shown that construction is not possible at sites found ideal for building the sewage treatment plants. “The land identified for the plants cannot be used.Ideally, the site needs to be near the banks of the Bhairobha nalla, but the only viable land has been found to be classified as secured defence property, which is why construction is not possible there,“ said a senior PCB official. The board had earmarked around Rs20 crore for the entire project.

Hence, the PCB is looking elsewhere, because of which it is almost certain to miss its 2017 deadline to finish the upgrade.

The alternative is to design a common sewage system with the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). But such an option did not work out in the past. The PCB and the PMC did sign an agreement to jointly develop the area’s sewage system and link it to the PMC lines, but the PMC withdrew about three years later due to cost and other concerns.

Apart from this, the PMC and the PCB are mired in other disputes involving laying water pipes and sewage lines, water supply bills and road restoration. A stretch of road in front of the PCB headquarters dug up by the PMC to lay water pipes lies unrepaired for over four months.

“Under such circumstances, we have to forward a proposal to the PMC, so that the sewer pipes laid in the Wanowrie and Ghorpadi areas can be linked to PMC lines in Kondhwa and Hadapsar,“ said an engineering department official from the PCB.

Source : TOI

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