With residents refusing to follow norms, the objective of tapping rainwater during this monsoon will be a distant dream. JDA had made it mandatory to construct rainwater harvesting facilities in houses built on plot sizes of 300 square metre or above. But majority of residents have not constructed such structures.
The JDA was authorised to penalise houseowners who fail to comply, but officials are turning a blind eye. The JDA enforcement wing had announced to impose a penalty of Rs 25,000 in 2011.
In nine years, neither a single inspection was carried out nor any notices issued to defaulters. There was also a provision of seven days’ imprisonment. The punitive provisions, however, have remained on paper.
“No notice has been issued to anybody for failing to set up a rainwater harvesting system during my tenure,” admitted a senior enforcement officer.
The town planning department approves layout plans for group housing societies and multi-storey buildings after ensuring that these would have rainwater harvesting systems.
However, no inspections have been made to ensure that the structure actually comply their undertaking. The excess use of water in posh colonies, despite rules and regulations, and no serious measures being taken to recharge groundwater may pose a serious threat to the city in future. Areas such as Raja Park, Jawahar Nagar, Jhotwara, Adarsh Nagar and Janata Colony are already in the dark zone for overexploitation of groundwater.