For Shubhangi Jadhav, 62, and her family of eight including two toddlers, every morning includes filling up buckets of water in their home at Haware City in Kasarvadavali, Thane. Like the Jadhavs, there are around 1,700 families in eight societies within Haware City and each society has to spend around ₹2 lakh for tankers every month.
Similarly, there are some areas in Diva and Mumbra that fall under the jurisdiction of Thane Municipal Corporation but continue to face water shortage. This is because the water supplied to these areas by the civic body is much lower than the required or allotted quantity. The scorching summer adds to the inconvenience caused due to water shortage.
Vinod Pawar, deputy city engineer, water supply department, TMC, said, “There was a shut down by TMC in some parts of the city as we were fixing pipelines and completing maintenance work. Moreover, we have put in a plan to reach out to individual buildings across the civic body, understand the water supply problems and find a solution for the same.”
Meanwhile, those residing in areas where there is inadequate supply of water are struggling. “As the water available is less, even if we are late in opening the taps by a few minutes, the flow of the water is less. Despite having a small tank at home, I have to fill the buckets,” added Jadhav whose sons and daughters-in-law are working professionals. Jadhav has to take care of her grandchildren, aged husband and manage the chore of filling up buckets on a daily basis.
These societies are only receiving 50% of the allotted water supply from the TMC. In the last one week, building Nos. 27 and 28 within Haware City called for 11 tankers despite which they could only provide an hour of water supply. Ninad Pimparkar, secretary of building Nos. 27 and 28, said, “We are supposed to get nine lakh litres of water from the TMC but we are only receiving on an average 4.5L or 5L litres. This is not sufficient. Hence, we have to call for tankers, which provide borewell water and is mostly used for cleaning and washing vessels. Many who do not have a water filter at home rely on mineral water for drinking.”
Residents of Diva and Mumbra are also facing a similar issue. In the last one month, Shivaji Nagar, Dargah Road, MK Compound, Dadi Colony in Mumbra have been facing a severe water crisis. Diva itself requires 35 million litres of water whereas it receives only 29 million litres.
“This is not just a problem that we face during summer. With development in the vicinity, the pressure of water is also subsiding. In summers, the issue aggravates as the need for water increases all around,” said Aarohi Jadhav, 43, a resident of Diva.
Residents from many housing societies have been meeting the TMC officials since the last two months, “We are upgrading the water supply network such that there are no leakages and the water reaches all the housing societies as per the allotted quantity,” added Pawar.
Vipin Sharma, TMC commissioner, said, “In low-lying areas like Diva and Mumbra, the old aqueducts that carry water need to be repaired. As it is difficult to repair them, we are planning to set up new aqueducts that will help improve the water supply. However, this will take some time to come into effect. In the meantime, we are trying our best to provide tankers to most of the areas that are not having adequate supply.”
The TMC has planned to re-model the water supply scheme for Mumbra, Diva and Ghodbunder Road. This project commenced in February 2019 and had a budget of ₹169.42Cr. This would help avoid leakage issues and ensure that adequate water reaches the consumers. The re-modelling of the Ghodbunder Road stretch has been fully completed while the work for the Mumbra and Diva stretch is still under progress.
Ashish Arghade, 44, a resident of Hill Spring Society, Kavesar, said, “We have been facing water shortage since the last two years. Despite repeated complaints to the civic body, we have not yet received continuous water supply. We are without water supply for more than six hours a day and have to spend ₹20,000 on tankers weekly.”