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VAK's Engagement with Water Issues > What's been in the Newspapers > November 2008

"Water meter contract gets civic sanction", 1 st November 2008 , The Times of India

The pilot project to test the efficacy of electronic water meters is yet to get underway, but the civic standing committee approved a Rs800-crore contract for the installation of four lakh meters across the city. A committee, comprising experts from the Indian Institute of Technology, Victoria Jubilee Technical Institute, Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran and others, has short-listed electronic meters from four companies -Actaris (France), Sapple (France) and Arad ( Israel ) for small-size meters and Jalsonic for industrial meters-that are to be tested for Mumbai's climate and topographical conditions.

Anil Diggikar, additional municipal commissioner, in-charge of water supply, said, "When the meter is finally selected, that company will have a monopoly and if fresh tenders are invited, it can ask for an exorbitant price. To avoid such a situation, we have brought the contract now." But the BJP and MNS objected, saying the proposal submitted to the standing committee was incomplete. "There are no details on how the Rs800 crore is going to be spent. To benefit two Marathi businessmen, we cannot allow lakhs of Marathi people to bear the burden," said Rajendra Lad of the MNS. He alleged that nearly Rs200 crore was being siphoned off in the name of maintenance.




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