The closing date for the compulsory installation of GPS systems in water tankers would be pushed back as the vehicle owners remain firm on their stand to go on a strike.

To resolve the issue, Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) officials conducted a meeting yesterday. In order to avoid a water crisis in the outskirts of the city, civic body functionaries have decided to extend the deadline.

PMC earlier made GPS devices in the tankers mandatory to check if the vehicle owners were violating rules and crossing city limits to supply water at higher rates to villages nearby.

About 177 persons own 350 tankers providing water to various housing societies in the city after filling up the vehicles from the PMC centres. However, civic officials have been receiving numerous complaints that the tankers are selling water at steep rates by crossing PMC limits.

Initially, the cut-off date to install GPS was May 15. Then it was extended to May 31. Till now only 10 to 15 tankers have complied, while the rest have refused.
City Engineer Prashant Waghmare said, “The GPS system is beneficial for all of them. It will give detailed information so the owners can watch out for any misuse of the tankers.

The reasons they cite for not installing GPS are baseless. Tanker owners say they are opposing the move owing to the cost of GPS devices and the possibility of the systems being stolen.

The cost of a GPS system starts from Rs 2500 and can go on to Rs 10,000, which is not unreasonable. These will be installed under the bonnet, so there is no question of stealing.”

Waghmare added that a strike by tanker owners would directly affect water supply.

“We want to avoid such a situation. That is why we have extended the time limit and have given them eight more days to install GPS systems,” he said.

Tankers supply water to various housing societies in the city after filling up the vehicles from the PMC centres