A tunnel in Malad, which had ruptured three years ago, has gotdamaged again, leading 15,000 litres of drinking water to go to waste each of the past four days.
The damage will affect water supply to parts of the western suburbs from Goregaon to Dahisar till December 1. The digging of a borewell in Pushpanjali housing society in Malad (East) punched a hole in the tunnel this time, but the BMC’s oversight is what brought it about.
When the borewell made its way 52 metres into the earth, it fractured the tunnel. The depth of the well had been sanctioned by the BMC, giving rise to accusations that it had not mapped the tunnel properly.
The BMC has set up a three-member committee to look into the lapse. Additional municipal commissioner Rajiv Jalota said, “We have set up an enquiry committee which will investigate the matter and suggest ways to tackle the damage.”
AS Tawadia, hydraulic engineer, said, “The repairs will start this Saturday.” Rahul Shewale, chairman of the standing committee, asked for buffer zones to protect tunnels.
“The BMC should stop giving permissions to dig up borewells and the administration should declare ‘buffer zones’ on surfaces 100 m from the tunnel site,” he said.
In 2010, the same 12-km tunnel, stretching from Bhandup Complex to Liberty Garden, Malad was damaged after a resident illegally dug up a bore well. It took three months and Rs 5 crore to fix it, and Goregaon, Malad, Jogeshwari and Kandivli suffered water cuts till it was repaired.
Brace for water cuts
From November 16 to December 1, a 25% water cut will be imposed from Goregaon (W) to Dahisar (W), and a 10% cut from Goregaon (E) to Dahisar (E).