Delhi Jal Board (DJB) is the government agency responsible for supply of potable water to the most of the National Capital Territory region of Delhi, India. Delhi Jal Board was constituted on 6 April 1998 through an Act of the Delhi Legislative Assembly incorporating the previous Delhi Water Supply and Sewage Disposal Undertaking. DJB is also responsible for treatment and disposal of waste water.

Prior to this Act the above function were entrusted with erstwhile Delhi Water Supply and Sewage Disposal Undertaking. The Board shall also be bound to supply to the New Delhi Municipal Council, Delhi Cantonment Board and Military Engineering services, at the place or places at which immediately before the commencement of this Act, the Delhi Water supply & Sewage Disposal Undertaking constituted under the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act,1957.

Water supply policiesEdit

In 2004, the DJB called on residents to use a bucket of water instead of shower in order to save water.[1] In July 2012, the Board decided to privatise tanker management system in the city to check pilferage of water.[2] Most recently, vide Resolution No. 871 dated 27.08.2019, the DJB announced a complete waiver of water arrears for people living in colonies categorised as E, F, G and H (House Tax Categorisation) and a rebate ranging from 25-75 per cent of the dues for consumers falling in the other four categories (A-D). [3][4] After a history of non-implementation of Rainwater Harvesting (RWH) Systems in the city [5] , the Board has now mandated the installation of such systems in the city while setting a hard target for implementation. [6] The Board has also made attempts to incentivise RWH methods by proposing financial assistance for the construction of RWH systems providing rebates on the water bill to households which install such systems. [7] The Board has also proposed the imposition of fines on households not complying with the hard deadline of March 2020 for getting RWH systems installed. [8]

Challenges in meeting needs of workers and residentsEdit

A 2007 article in Newsweek profiled a ten-year veteran sewer worker of Delhi Jal, in preparation for the 2007 World Toilet Summit in New Delhi. "The four-day event is exploring ways to bring sewage systems to the estimated 2.6 billion people in the world who don't have proper toilets, including 700 million in India alone."

The article carried the headline: "The world's worst job? Indian sewage workers are certainly in the running," adding that the 3,700 miles of existing sewer lines were in poor repair and had inadequate capacity to meet the needs of a growing population.[9]

Brief history and background for its establishmentEdit

For over 5 decades, Delhi Jal Board has been meeting the needs of potable water for the National Capital Territory of Delhi. The population of Delhi has seen phenomenal growth and has crossed the figure of 140 lacs, apart from the floating population of 4 to 5 lacs. Through systematic planning and implementation, the Board has ensured average availability of 50 gallons filtered water per capita per day for the residents of Delhi, through a network of about 9000 km of water mains/lines. Production of water during 2003-2004 was around 670 MGD, Raw water is obtained from various sources line the river Yamuna, Bhakra Storage, Upper Ganga Canal, and Ground Water.

Allocation of businessEdit

Apart from piped water supply, and collection and treatment of sewage, Delhi Jal Board provides the following services to its customers:

  • Supply of potable water through tankers on demand
  • Supply of packaged water "JAL" in jars through Jal Suvidha Kendras.
  • Supply of Biogas and sludge Manure(Limited areas).
  • Water meter testings.
  • Testing of Water samples.

Corruption chargesEdit

Delhi Jal Board was found guilty of corruption in an effort to privatize itself when an investigation was conducted by Arvind Kejriwal and the non-governmental organization (NGO) Parivartan in 2005.[10] After submitting a Right to Information (RTI) request, Parivartan received 9000 pages of correspondence and consultation with the World Bank, where it was revealed that the privatization of Delhi's water supply would provide salaries of $25,000 a month to four administrators of each of the 21 water zones, which amounted to over $25 million per year, increasing the budget by over 60% and water taxes 9 times.[11][12]

The Delhi Jal Board was first approached by Parivartan in November 2004, following a report by the newspaper The Asian Age, where the scheme was revealed to the public for the first time.[11][12] The DJB denied the existence of the project, but after an appeal, the RTI request was granted. The documents revealed that the project began in 1998, in complete secrecy within the DJB administration.[11][12] The DJB approached the World Bank for a loan to improve the water system, which it approved, and the effort began with a $2.5 million consultation loan. The Delhi government could have easily provided the money, and the interest rate of 12% that was to be loaned by the World Bank could have been raised on capital markets for 6%.[11][12] Following the consultation, 35 multi-national companies bid, of which six were to be short listed, out of which PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) was found to be unethically favored, and granted the contract in 2001.[10][13] Following the investigation by Parivartan, a campaign was waged by Kejriwal, Aruna Roy, and other activists across Delhi, and the DJB withdrew the loan application to the World Bank.[10][11][12]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Shower with a bucket, 31 July 2004, The Hindu
  2. ^ "To curb pilferage, DJB to privatise tanker system". 11 July 2012.
  3. ^ "Delhi waiver of water dues: Explained". 28 August 2019.
  4. ^ "DIRECTOR(REVENUE) CIRCULAR NO-9582 REGARDING SCHEME OF WALVER OF 100% LPSC AMOUNT" (PDF). 5 September 2019.
  5. ^ "Parched Capital: While Delhi struggles to make rainwater harvesting compulsory even after 13 years of amending byelaws, Chennai shows the way". 11 June 2011.
  6. ^ "Water harvesting now must for Delhi homes of 100sq m & above". 30 August 2019.
  7. ^ "INSTRUCTIONAL ORDER No. DJB/DOR/DDRHQ-1/2017" (PDF). 30 January 2017.
  8. ^ "Houses, institutions to be fined for not harvesting rainwater in Delhi". 31 August 2019.
  9. ^ "World's Worst Job? India's sewage workers are certainly in the running". The Daily Beast / Newsweek. 31 October 2007. Retrieved 4 March 2012.
  10. ^ a b c RTI expose of how World Bank had arm-twisted Delhi Jal Board for water privatisation. Money Life. 1 January 2012.
  11. ^ a b c d e Delhi Water Privatisation Plan. Independent Peoples Tribunal on the World Bank in India.
  12. ^ a b c d e How World-Bank Dicatates Indian Policies. Youtube. BharatKiAwaaz.
  13. ^ RTI Spurs Debate on World Bank Involvement in Delhi Water Deal. Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative.

Monsoon Measures by BM Dhaul ( Technical member of Delhi Jal Board since 36 Year)

External linksEdit