Ludhiana choking on its sewerage as all 3 treatment plants face crisis
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The city is literally choking with all three of its sewerage treatment plants, located at Jamalpur, Bhattian and Balloke villages, performing poorly, a source from water and sewerage board said.
The Bhattian sewerage plant has stopped working, for the past four days, due to a transformer snag leaving the whole area in a complete mess. Ludhiana Newsline visited the two other STPs of the city and found that the situation is no better.
Divulging details of the mess, the official from sewerage board, on the condition of anonymity, said: "To maintain the three plants we require at least Rs 30 lakh per month but Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) has not given us even half the amount. We have just received Rs 40 lakhs this financial year (2012-13) and dues of more than Rs 3 crore is pending with the civic body." He further added: "The sewerage board is always at the receiving end because if a plant does not run even for a single day, an FIR is filed against the board. Nobody realises we are fund-strapped."
The official even admitted that the funds from other schemes, running under the board in areas like Ropar, Khanna, Doraha and Machhiwara, are 'diverted' to handle the situation. "We know it is not right and in a way illegal but we do not have any other option. We cannot drown the city," he said. The three plants are only for domestic water treatment but in reality industrial and other commercial wastes have choked them.
Designed to handle 48 million litre per day (MLD) by 2025, the plant is already choked with 70 MLD. What has added to it problems is that according to a survey conducted by the Punjab Pollution Control Board, more than 70 per cent of the water is from industrial units containing heavy metals and chemicals. The machinery of the plant has completely worn out and rusted due to the chemicals. "It is performing poorly and requires heavy immediate maintenance," said the source.