With the technical wing of the Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India - Central Public Health and Environmental Engineering Organisation ( CPHEEO), clearing the Rs 369.40-crore drainage line project, the Aurangabad civic body is optimistic to start the project within the next three to four months.
Mayor Kala Oza on Monday said that the project was in the final stages of approval. "We hope to get the approval very soon as most of the technical queries have been addressed. We are in constant talks with Aurangabad MP Chandrakant Khaire. We are also planning a visit to the urban development ministry in New Delhi in the next four to five days to discuss the project," she said.
Elaborating on the technical aspects, city engineer Sakharam Panzade said the new project would take care of the city's drainage system till year 2030. "It comprises five sewage treatment plants (STP) with a total capacity of 222 MLD," he said.
The current sewage system was built in the early eighties when the city's total population was about 2 lakh. Despite rise in population, the old system is still in use. This over utilisation has resulted in leakages at many places.
He said the civic body had prepared a detailed project report keeping in view the growing demand. "Once approved, the project will be completed in three years' time and the private contractors will have to undertake its maintenance for fifteen years," he said. In the current situation, the AMC is spending close to Rs 10 crore annually on maintenance of the sewage system, he added.
Nodal officer and executive engineer Afsar Siddiqui said that the state had sent a proposal of similar projects of 40 different civic bodies to Centre for approval. "But AMC's project is on priority and the chances of approval look bright," he said.
Commenting on funding required for the project, he said the Centre would fund 50% of the total cost, state would give 40%, while the AMC's contribution would be 10%. "The civic body has already made financial provision of Rs 10 crore in the 2013-14 budget for the project. In addition to this, a finance body has approved the required loan for it," he said.