Water Woes Echoed In Vizag ZPP General Body
Visakhapatnam: The severe drinking water scarcity in 39 mandals of the district echoed in the general body meeting of Visakhapatnam Zilla Parishad held in the city on Wednesday. Unlike other times, representatives of both the ruling party and the Opposition were united in demanding immediate measures to mitigate the crisis.
Chaired by Lalam Bhavani, the meeting saw several MPPs and MLAs bringing to the notice of the District Collector and other officials the intensity of the drinking water problem. As the summer is reaching its peak, the water bodies in the Agency area have dried up and the people had to walk miles together in the rough terrain to fetch water, complained Paderu MPP, SVV Ramana Murty. Munagapaka ZPTC member D.Lakshimi Satyanarayana complained that the digging of new hand bore wells was not being taken up even as there was severe stress on the present bore wells. He pointed to the lack of coordination among the various departments citing an example that the tap water supply was not commissioned in the absence of electric supply to be taken care of by the AP Eastern Power Distribution Company Ltd (APEPDCL). The District Collector intervened at this juncture and issued orders to take up the issue with the APEPDCL.
Yelamanchili MLA Panchakarla Ramesh Babu was keen on getting the response from officials about the functionality of the toll-free number set up for receiving complaints from the people about drinking water issues. He urged the officials to resume piped water to Pudimadaka village to which water supply was interrupted owing to the pipeline damage during the National Thermal Power Project’s civil works.
Visakhapatnam MP K.Hari Babu expressed his anger at the officials over not spending funds sanctioned from his MPLADS (Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS).
What is more worrying to the local body representatives was the reply from the officials that about Rs. 3 crore allocated for mitigating the water crisis could only be spent on maintenance and repair works of old projects and not on providing new water facilities. The District Collector informed the meeting that plans for developing new water works at an outlay of Rs. 117 crore had been sent to the State government.