Water Crisis: No New Building Permissions in PMRDA Without Comprehensive Assessment; Builder’s Affidavits Won’t Suffice – Pune Divisional Commissioner

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Camp, 15th January 2024: The Pune Divisonal Commissioner Saurabh Rao today convened the second crucial meeting to address the escalating water crisis in Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC). The gathering, attended by nearly 60 to 70 representatives from housing societies, Housing Federations, Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat, and Maharashtra Housing Societies Federation, discussed pivotal measures to alleviate the crisis.

One of the significant announcements made during the meeting was by the Divisional Commissioner, declaring that no new permissions would be granted in the Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA) jurisdiction without a thorough assessment of the local body’s, PMRDA’s, and Zilla Parishad’s ability to provide water to new constructions. It was emphasized that permissions should not be solely based on affidavits from builders.

The demand for water supply through tankers by PMC and PCMC was once again on the agenda, with the Divisional Commissioner indicating that the subject is currently under evaluation. Spot visits to both corporations have been mandated to comprehend the ground-level realities and devise suitable solutions.

To streamline communication and address complaints more efficiently, both corporations will establish a dedicated email ID for housing complexes to register grievances related to water scarcity. Furthermore, it was decided that starting from the next meeting, complaints would be received in advance, and solutions would be presented during the subsequent monthly gathering.

Advocate Satya Muley, who is representing residents in the Bombay High Court, emphasized that the water crisis is a district-wide problem requiring intensive efforts from the special committee. While acknowledging the importance of immediate solutions, Muley stressed the need for long-term planning, highlighting apparent deficiencies in the strategic planning of both corporations.

Expressing frustration, several representatives at the meeting voiced concerns over the perceived inaction by both corporations in effectively addressing the ongoing crisis. The meeting concluded with a commitment to collaborative efforts and a renewed focus on strategic, sustainable solutions to tackle the water scarcity issue in PMC and PCMC.