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April 18, 2017
The Times of India

Water board to issue final STP notification soon

BENGALURU: Even while apartment owners have filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in the high court against the BWSSB for making sewage treatment plants and dual piping mandatory for apartment complexes with 50 or more flats, the water board seems to be in no mood to step back.

In fact, it is all set to issue the final notification as it claims that there were no objections from public to the March 18 order. Senior BWSSB officials said the deadline for citizens to file objections/suggestions for the STP rule is over. "Not many objections have come before us, and we'll be issuing the final notification soon," he added

On March 18, the BWSSB issued a draft notification of the Bangalore Sewerage (Amendment) Regulations, 2017, making installation of dual piping (for reusing recycled water within apartments) and setting up of STPs mandatory. Citizens were given a window of 30 days to file objections. Apartment owners in the city, including members of Bangalore Apartments' Federation (BAF), have been opposing the STP rule, terming it as illegal, illogical and impractical. Members of BAF, led by their general secretary Srikanth Narasimhan, have also met BWSSB chairman Tushar Girinath and demanded that the board reconsider its decision. "It's illogical because the rule doesn't address any problem, be it lake pollution or demand for water. It's impractical as apartments constructed in 1980s and 90s will have to incur a huge cost and risk the safety of the building to get this done," added a member of BAF.

"BWSSB is not even clear about what the problem is. If the rule is intended to avoid sewage polluting lakes, then it doesn't make sense because the old apartments, which are already connected to BWSSB sewage network, are not the cause of lake pollution. If it is load on the BWSSB sewage network that the board wants to tackle with the STP rule, that also doesn't make sense, since BWSSB STPs are presently running below capacity," they said.