Bangalore is reeling under serious drinking water situation. Even otherwise, the city was not getting its requisite quantity of water. That is why, few years back alternate day supply came into practice. Now, this summer which naturally witnesses a 15 to 20 % increase in the demand has made the situation still more difficult. Added to this, the proverbial leakage, unaccounted water loss, failure of bore wells, greed of private tankers who are not ready to join hands with the BWSSB to supply water, are making the situation even worse. The Board Engineers and the staff with all their inadequacies are addressing the problems.
Every day we hear, read about the supply breakdowns from different parts of the city. The frequent power fluctuations add up to the already critical problem. Yesterday I and Shobha Karandlaje had convened a meeting of KPTCL, BESCOM & BWSSB to take necessary steps to sort out some issues.
Last year over 1000 Borewells were dug all over the city. Now over 50% of them have dried up. On demands from the People's Representatives, more bore wells are being dug, which we know is neither proper nor feasible.
Yesterday night I went to Gayathri Hospital, Vijayanagar and met a person called Shankara Rao who was undergoing treatment for the bruises on his body. He was under a big shock. His sobbing wife was inconsolable. The reason...? Shankara Rao, who is a water supply inspector was attacked and profusely beaten by a mob in what appears to be a planned act. Strangely a camera team from a popular TV channel was present before the mob arrived in a matador. The hapless inspector begged for his life, pleaded for his inculpability. A local leader was encouraging the participants in this orgy to hit more. Job done, the mob along with the instigator dispersed. Their 'adventure' got very good coverage which might have upped the TPR rate for that channel. BUT, what about that hapless employee and his weeping family members. How if, the BWSSB employees, who are also there to serve the common man , go down their morale, and become inactive ? Will that not lead to deterioration in the water supply condition?
This 'irresponsibility' may become too costly. We had heard of Cash for News in a section of the media. Now this 'planned attack' or 'action' for exclusive "breaking news" is really dangerous.
I, along with the Board Chairman rushed to the hospital consoled the victim and his family members. Board is taking care of the treatment and will bear all the necessary expenditure. We also spoke to the workers' union office-bearers and expressed solidarity. BUT, I also appealed to the workforce to stand up to the challenge and rededicate ourselves to see that the problems are surmounted. Our single minded effort should be to do our best to take water to the doorsteps of the citizens which is their fundamental right.
YES. It is my belief that we have a duty which we should perform whatever may be situation. AND we will do it.