The Karnataka government is contemplating an embargo on the construction of new apartments in Bengaluru due to the water crisis. Deputy Chief Minister and Bengaluru Development Minister Dr G Parameshwara said the government will soon come up with a new rule to restrict new constructions for the next five years.
The proposal comes in the backdrop of worsening water crisis in the city and the fact that several apartments complexes in Bengaluru are depending on tanker-delivered water.
Parameshwara pointed out that many builders are constructing apartments and selling them without showing a permanent source of water. "Bengaluru has numerous apartment complexes and many are under construction. As the builders are constructing and selling apartments without making adequate arrangements for basic amenities like drinking water, the state government is seriously considering a five-year ban on granting permissions for the construction of apartments," he said.
The Deputy CM also said that due to the poor quality of water supplied by the private tankers, several people living in apartments are diagnosed with allergies and skin ailments. He said that the government will hold a meeting with all the developers, seeking their opinion on the ban. He has also directed Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials to check if the existing apartments have functional sewage treatment plants.
This proposal by the Karnataka government came even as the Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board has launched a plan to bring piped water to every household under its Cauvery Water Supply scheme. The project is likely to be completed in five years and will ensure that every household gets Cauvery water.
Most of the apartments in the city rely on water tankers and residents pay a hefty amount to the water mafia. The acute water crisis in areas like Bellandur and Sarjapura had given rise to the water mafia in the city. The residents in these areas claim that private tankers are sourcing water from a lake.