Mumbai: BJP Lok Sabha MP Kirit Somaiya today alleged irregularities in the supply of water to tankers by the Shiv Sena-ruled Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and demanded an SIT probe into the matter.
kirit Somaiya. Pic/ Bipin Kokate
Somaiya claimed the Sena is "shielding" the business of water tanker "mafias" in Mumbai, a charge refuted by the Uddhav Thackeray-led party, which is ruling the country's richest civic body in alliance with BJP.
"In 100 days, that is from January 1 to April 10 this year, the BMC has sold 38,999 litres of water to private tanker mafias in the city through 18 water filling points. In this period, 13,424 tankers were sanctioned for use by the Municipal Corporation," he said at a press conference here.
The private tanker owners are buying water at a rate of one paisa per litre from the BMC and selling it at a rate of Re 1 per litre to people, he claimed.
"Mumbai is already facing a water crunch and there is a loss of about 50 lakh litres of drinking water daily due to the unlawful activities of these mafias," he alleged.
"The Shiv Sena knows what is going on. But their Group leader (in BMC), the Standing Committee Chairman and the Mayor have not spoken a word on this," he added.
Somaiya said a few days back he met Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and demanded a high-level probe into the matter. The BJP leader said he also met civic Chief Ajoy Mehta who has assured him of appropriate action.
"I have submitted all relevant documents and sought an SIT probe into the matter. The CM has asked the BMC Commissioner to look into the matter," Somaiya said.
Sena Group leader Trushna Vishwasrao termed Somaiya's allegations of protecting water tanker "mafias" as baseless, but added if irregularities have taken place, the guilty should be punished.
She told PTI, "Somaiya is levelling baseless allegations against us. When the CM has spoken to the BMC Commissioner, why no action has been taken yet? Our members and Corporators are against these mafias and have time and again sought action against them."