Sewerage board issues notice over pending dues

The crisis has further deepened for the three sewerage treatment plants (STPs) of Ludhiana located at Balloke, Jamalpur and Bhattian village. The water and sewerage board has issued notices to Ludhiana municipal corporation demanding immediate release of pending funds and has given an ultimatum saying that 'if funds are not released by December 15, the STPs will be closed'. The board has further advised the MC to 'either overtake them and run it on its own or provide the funds to the sewerage board by December 15'.

On November 25, Newsline had reported that to maintain the three plants, the sewerage board requires at least Rs 30 lakh per month but the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) has not given even half the amount. They 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.

A source from the water and sewerage board, said: "We have clearly told the MC that the board is not in a position to run the plants without funds and December 15 has been set as a deadline for the payments. At present Rs 32 lakh in addition to previous Rs 3 crore is due and we want at least Rs 64 lakh by December 15. We also want the continuation of Rs 30 lakh per month grant which has been discontinued by MC." The copy of the notice has also been sent to district commissioner Rahul Tewari.

R K Verma, commissioner of the MC, said: "The dues are pending for the past many years, but we are trying our best to clear the dues." If the STPs stop working, the whole city is going to choke with foul smell all around which will be no less than a crisis for already polluted Ludhiana.

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