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Hyderabad drinking water crisis, tanker price surge to 1500 Rs

Hyderabad is facing a severe water crisis, with the city’s residents struggling to cope with skyrocketing prices for private water tankers.

By Ground report
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Hyderabad drinking water crisis, tanker price surge to 1500 Rs

Hyderabad is facing a severe water crisis, with the city’s residents struggling to cope with skyrocketing prices for private water tankers. Reports indicate that the cost of water has surged to Rs 1,500-Rs 2,000 per tanker, a significant increase from the usual rates. This crisis has been exacerbated by the alleged illicit redirection of free tankers, meant for public use, to hotels and factories, leading to a scarcity of available water.

Hyderabad water crisis: Prices soar

The situation has revealed a disturbing collusion between some officials of the Hyderabad Metro Water Supply and Sewerage Board (HMWSSB) and private tanker operators. Evidence suggests that these tankers, which should be serving the public, are instead being diverted to serve commercial interests. The malpractice has been particularly noted in areas such as Banjara Hills, Sanath Nagar, Madhapur, and Gachibowli.

In Manikonda, a community of approximately 20,000 houses, residents are facing acute water shortages, with many going days without access to drinking water. The community’s reliance on private tankers has become a financial burden, especially as prices have risen sharply. Additionally, there are concerns about significant water wastage during transportation, with an estimated 17 lakh litres lost monthly due to spillage.

A resident of Manikonda, Arif, expressed his distress, stating that the community has not faced such a severe crisis in the past four years. He highlighted that the demand for tankers has become a daily necessity, with residents paying inflated prices well above the official rates listed on the HMWSSB website.

Despite these challenges, a Water Board representative has downplayed the shortage's severity, attributing the increased demand for tankers to seasonal consumption patterns. However, the situation remains critical as Hyderabad approaches the summer months, which traditionally see a rise in water usage.

Water scarcity in Kempegowda Nagar

Residents claimed, "We have to wait for 2-3 days for private individuals to provide us with water. Private suppliers intentionally delay the water supply to extract more money from residents. The suppliers charge us anywhere between Rs 1,200 to Rs 1,500 per tanker, and only provide the water 2-3 days after receiving our call and request for water".

BBMP is aiming to regulate water tanker prices by discussing and fixing rates with the Water Tanker Owners Association. They may use additional powers from the draft rules of the groundwater board. They will implement the self-registration process for trade licenses. By the first week of May, the stage 5 project of Cauvery water supply will benefit villages.

Adding to the city’s woes, the Water Board has announced a disruption in the water supply scheduled for March 9-10. This interruption is due to necessary repairs on the conduit from Osmansagar to Hakimpet. The affected areas will include several key localities across Hyderabad, causing further inconvenience to residents already grappling with the ongoing water crisis.

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