Hyderabad: After the operation and maintenance (O&M) of the sewerage system in the peripheral circles of the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) was handed over to the Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (HMWS&SB) on October 1, the latter has incorporated technology and adapted new approach to strengthen the sewerage network.
Earlier out of the 150 wards in GHMC limits, the O&M of sewage in 66 wards was taken up by the GHMC and the remaining was taken care of by the water board. The activity was handed to the water board as per the instructions of Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister KT Rama Rao.
Following this, the HMWS&SB recently 66 procured airtech machines, identified 792 vulnerable locations, conducted social audit of sewerage management works and formed technical teams to monitor the sewage operations, these series of activities were executed within seven weeks.
These works are in addition to the proposed works with Rs 35 crore. With the fund, narrow pipelines will be replaced with bigger ones and additional machinery will be procured. Plans are also underway to use robotic technology to clean sewer lines.
This metamorphosis underwent by the department within a short span is yielding results. In the city peripheries, since October 1, a total of 36,871 complaints were received and 36,282 have been resolved as per water board records.
As per HMWS&SB records, 85 % of the grievances have been resolved since October 1, the O&M of sewage was handed over to them and plans are underway to ensure 95 % grievance redressal in the coming months.
Besides strengthening the sewage network in the city, the new tact to strengthen the sewerage network turned into a boon for staffers. A series of measures to safeguard the life and health of workers involved in maintaining the sewerage network in the city were taken up.
Besides providing the staffers with safety gear, they are being briefed about precautionary measures that need to be taken and senior officials to monitor the works have been appointed. Plans are underway to procure protective body suits and respiratory apparatus from Germany. The cost of each suit along with the apparatus is Rs 2 lakh.
Verification revealed that though the O&M of the sewage maintenance has improved, the HMWS&SB grievance redressal system was far behind.
Speaking to Telangana Today, residents said that the board officials do not respond to their grievances.“Reporting sewage overflow by calling water board staffers did not yield any results on several occasions. Our repeated complaint to water board staffers by physically visiting their office went in vain. The officials should at least respond to honest taxpayers respectfully,” said Dr Sai Ravi Shanker, president, Federation of Gated Communities, Cyberabad and Secretary, Aparna Towers. The federation consists of over 80 housing societies spread across the IT corridor.
RWAs in the eastern part of the city also opined the same. “Despite the modern machinery available, the board officials do not turn up in time, the time taken to address the grievance is more. They are not connected with Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs), earlier the GHMC staffers would attend the complaint soon,” said United Federation of Resident Welfare Associations (UFERWAS) general secretary BT Srinivasan.
Pertaining to grievance redressal HMWS&SB in a note said that an additional WhatsApp number will be made available to people soon. “Besides the 24 Hours Customer Care: 155 313 an exclusive number to report sewerage issues in peripheral areas will be made operational,” read the note issued by HMWS&SB.
Now you can get handpicked stories from Telangana Today on Telegram everyday.