Pune: Referring to the tragedy wherein hundreds of houses in the city suffered severe damage due to the Mutha right bank canal wall breach last month, former Water and Land Management Institue (WALMI) professor and author Pradeep Purandare remarked, “Maharashtra Water Resources Regulatory Authority (MWRRA) lacks a canal maintenance handbook as of date. The canal walls are getting washed off, there is no regulation in the flow of the water. There is an urgent need to improve engineering and management.”
Purandare was speaking at an event organised by Vanrai, an NGO working for the betterment of the environment, on Friday.
Purandare further added, “When the canal design is made on paper, only 40-48 per cent efficiency is ensured but when the plan comes into existence, it is only 20-25 per cent efficient.”
Purandare pointed out, “We have 21st century requirement with 19th century technology. The government has not passed any new norms since 2003 regarding the canals.”
On being asked about the future of the canals, Purandare expressed serious concern saying, “We need automation on the canals. Pipelining needs to be done. Proper steps need to be taken to stop water theft. The existing canals need better management. This is a serious issue and we need to come together to divert government’s attention towards it.”