PUNE: After Pune, it could be destination Nashik for industry as Pune is fast running out of land. The vigorous land acuisition by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) and private industry here is soon going to ensure this.

Sources said that the state government’s industrial infrastructure development arm is looking to create a land bank of between 10,000-20,000 hectares in the two cities, Pune and Nashik, with emphasis on the latter.

However, the attraction of destination Pune remains. MIDC is looking to acquire land for which notifications have been issued at Ranjangaon, Talegaon, Chakan, Karla and Khed.

The state government is believed to have received 1800 applications for the Chakan industrial area, 1100 for Ranjangaon and 600 for Talegaon. The land bank with the MIDC, Pune region, is close to being exhausted and it is facing problems in acquiring new land.

Industry experts think Nashik will prove to be the alternative to Pune. “Nashik, with it’s huge land availability, abudant water supply and connectivity with Mumbai offers ideal locations. It has got mild climate like Pune too,” sources said.
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  • Civic body turns off taps of 60 over water tax dues Tushar Pawar | Mar 23, 2019, 04:52 IST

    The NMC has collected 40 crore against the tax target of 45 crore

    Nashik: The Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) has snapped the water supply to 60 consumers who failed to clear the tax dues despite repeated notices.

    With the current financial year about to end, the water department of the civic body is going all out to meet its target. The water department has collected Rs 40 crore so far, against the target of Rs 45 crore for the financial year 2018-19. In the last fiscal, the NMC had collected water tax amounting to Rs 29.50 crore.

    “We are yet to collect payment of over Rs 5 crore to meet the target for the current financial year. Earlier, we had served notices to several water tax defaulters. We have started taking action against those who failed to pay the water tax dues,” sources from NMC said.

    The major focus of the NMC’s water tax department is to ensure that it achieves hundred percent target set for water tax collection this financial year.

    “We could not focus on water tax collection during the last financial year due to inadequate manpower, but we are taking various measures to increase the water tax collection this year,” NMC officials said.

    NMC had collected water tax amounting to Rs 31 crore by January-end during the current financial year. But, it could collected only Rs 9 crore during the past one-and-a-half month. This was followed by issuance of notices and snapping water connections.

    The water tax department of the NMC initially targeted the big defaulters and served final notices to over 60,000 other defaulters till Feberuary-end. The total outstanding amount that time was about Rs 14 crore.

    “We recently started snapping water connections of defaulters following their failure to pay the dues. We have asked the divisional officers in all six divisions to take tough action against these defaulters,” said NMC sources, adding that more water connections may snapped during next few days.

    The NMC has six divisional offices — Nashik East, Nashik West, Nashik Road, Satpur, Panchavati and Cidco divisions — which collect property and water taxes.

    The civic body has also made announcements, using public address system, appealing to the residents to clear their tax liabilities before the end of the financial year.

  • Garbage woes continue in parts of Nashik Sumita Sarkar | TNN | Mar 25, 2019, 11:17 IST

    Representative image

    NASHIK: The complaints with respect to garbage collection continue in certain parts of the city despite authorities imposing fine amounting to crores of rupees.

    These include irregularities in the garbage collection, segregation issues, lack of maintenance of vehicles and eateries handing the solid waste over to the domestic garbage collection vans despite there being dedicated vans for hotel waste.

    The vans are reportedly being used without proper repair and maintenance, waste segregation is not done and there are also timing issues as well as other complaints, due to which the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) has been slapping fines on the contractors. However, it seems there is not much improvement in the system. The NMC’s reply to an RTI revealed that the civic body has imposed fines amounting to Rs3 crores in two years.

    According to the RTI, the maximum number of discrepancies were found in the Panchavati and New Nashik divisions, where Rs2.5 crore has been charged as fines.

    “From December 2016 to November 2018, we have imposed total fines of Rs2.98 crore. Out of this, Rs1.1 crore was for the Panchavati division and Rs1.43 crore for New Nashik. The fines were for various reasons like the van not reaching the various locations (check points) in time as per the time table, absence of staff, depositing salaries late in the bank, some vehicles are not in a condition yet are being used etc,” said an NMC official.

    Corporators had raised the issues of garbage collection during many of the NMC’s standing committee meetings and had also demanded an inquiry.

    “At times, we get a few minutes late while filling fuel. During such times, we may not be able to reach the check points in time. However, we try our best to maintain the scheduled timings,” said the supervisor of a garbage van.

    During the last meeting of the medical assistance and health committee, members had complained that waste from the hotels and restaurants were handed over to the vans that are meant to collect household waste although independent vans have been dedicated to collect solid waste from such eateries.

    “We have instructed the contractors. This issue is being taken care of,” said an NMC official.

    The official added, “Many of the irregularities have been corrected. We are keeping a watch and will streamline the rest at the earliest. We have not been able to achieve 100% waste segregation. Citizens should be more aware about their responsibilities as well. We have also issued strict instructions to the supervisors about the methods of proper waste segregation.”

  • No water supply till fire equipment is installed in Swagat Heights: Nashik civic body
    NMC had disconnected water supply to the building in August last year when it found out that the height of the building was more than 15 metres and was without a fire-safety equipment.Sumita Sarkar | March 24, 2019, 09:47 IST

    NASHIK: The civic administration has once again made it clear that it would not resume water supply to Swagat Heights until and unless the residents install fire-fighting equipment in the apartment.

    Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) had disconnected water supply to the building in August last year when it found out that the height of the building was more than 15 metres and was without a fire-safety equipment. As per the approved plan, the height mentioned is 14.85 metres.

    The assistant director of town planning was directed by the civic chief to investigate the case, take action against the guilty officers and resume water supply. Even after 90 days of the issuance of the direction, nothing had been done in this regard. The residents of the society have decided to boycott the elections if the water supply is not resumed. Currently, the residents have to buy drinking water.

    Additional municipal commissioner Haribhau Phadol recently chaired a meeting comprising officials of NMC’s town planning and fire department and office-bearers of Swagat Heights.

    Phadol said, “The residents or the builder should install fire-fighting equipment or demolish the additional 35 mm height and get the revised plan approved. Only then will the civic body resume water supply.”

    Both chief of the fire department Sanjay Bairagi and assistant director of town planning department Suresh Nikumbhe expressed similar views, pressing upon the society to install the fire-fighting equipment in their apartment.

    Residents said that the needful should be done by the builder but that if he refused to do it, then the encroachment department should demolish the excess construction.

    Chairman of the society Vijay Jadhav said, “The builder should install the fire-fighting equipment. We have been told that since the building was handed over to us, it is our responsibility to put the equipment in place. In that case, NMC should demolish the additional construction as per the Maharashtra Regional Town Planning Act. We cannot understand where is our fault.”


  • Water woes of Wadala residents continue Sumita Sarkar | Mar 30, 2019, 04:02 IST

    Nashik: With the onset of summer, the water woes of 15,000-odd residents of Wadala have gone from bad to worse.

    Facing water crisis throughout the year, these residents are forced to buy water. And, so far, the civic body has done very little to resolve the issue. Sathe Nagar, Mehboob Nagar, Madinah Nagar, Gulshan Nagar and Sadiq Nagar are the areas reeling under water scarcity. These areas get water from Gandhinagar and Indiranagar water storage tanks.

    On Thursday, a delegation of the residents met East division official of the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) who assured them to increase the number of tankers and resolve the issue by April-end after pipeline laying work from Mukane dam is completed.

    “We buy water every day. We have to walk around a kilometre to Wadalagaon and fetch water in pots. We face water problems throughout the year. In summer, the problem is severe. We have to wake up at 2am for filling water from the well. One pipeline was laid for this area many years ago but that too stopped functioning long back,” Ramji Thorat, a local resident, said.

    Another resident, Bhaurao Battise, said that poor water supply has been a perennial issue. “We pay Rs200 per month to a farmer for drawing water from his well. We have to wake up early for filling water. Our children also go on bicycles to fill water. Water tankers are provided by the NMC but over there it’s too chaotic,” he said,

    Local corporator Shyam Badode said, “A 12 inch water pipeline of Rs3 crore has been sanctioned through funds for backward area. This pipeline would be laid from water tank at Pandav Nagari to Sathe Nagar and Sadiq Nagar and problem of the entire region would be resolved forever. However, the cost quoted by the bidder was above the tender price.”

    He added, “I asked civic officials to get the task done from the general head for water in budget. But they are not serious. On Thursday I took a delegation to the divisional office and the DO assured 2-3 trips of 5,000 litre and 4-5 trips of 2,500 litre tanks. But the trips are not as assured.”

    A senior civic body official said, “We are supplying water through four small and four big tankers every day. After April when pipeline work from Mukane dam is completed the problem will be resolved.”

  • Yeola foresters may reward your efforts to conserve wildlife Sumita Sarkar | Apr 2, 2019, 04:18 IST

    Nashik: Officials at Yeola forest range have appealed to people send photographs, videos and information about any conservation work undertaken for animals, birds and trees in summer. The range is organising a competition titled ‘April Cool’.

    The range forest office, Yeola, East division invited people to participate in the competition. The invitation was circulated on Monday and the department has received entries from across the district as well as from other places like Satara.

    People could show how water is provided to animals and birds, or show innovative methods of watering plants in gardens, terraces etc in summer and protecting them from the sun, collecting seeds of various trees etc. The initiative has been organised for the first time in Nashik to create awareness and aid in conservation.

    “For the first time the forest department is conducting such an activity in Nashik. It is a different kind of initiative to create awareness and compassion for wildlife and reward people doing good conservation work,” range forest officer of Niphad Sanjay Bhandari, the one to come up with the idea, said.

    He said a trophy would be given to those securing first, second and third prizes, but any cash reward could only be offered once senior officials approve of it.

    “People are giving entries with photos and videos from Satara as well. Ramesh Iyer from Nashik city has also given us information about the work he is doing by distributing water pots for birds and wildlife,” Bhandari said.

    Photographs and videos, along with the name of the person sending these and information about the initiative undertaken can be sent by email or Whatsapp by April 30. The email is is rfoyeola@gmail.com; and the phone number for WhatsApp is 9420001157.

  • Nashik Inc to move court against power tariff hike Tushar Pawar | TNN | Apr 2, 2019, 12:00 IST

    Picture used for representational purpose only

    NASHIK: Prominent industrial associations in Nashik have decided to take the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (MSEDCL) to court over the recent hike in power tariff for industries and consumers that will be implemented from April 1, 2019.

    The associations have decided to move high court once they get the electricity bills based on revised fresh tariff. The associations have also decided set up a committee and raise joint funds to fight all legal cases against the MSEDCL.

    A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of industrial associations held in in the city on Monday. State president of Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce, Industry & Agriculture (MACCIA) Santosh Mandlecha, president of Nashik Industries & Manufacturers’ Association (NIMA) Harishankar Banerjee and president of Ambad Industries & Manufacturers’ Association (AIMA) Varun Talwar were present at the meeting.

    “The fresh hike is around 6%, but the MSEDCL has not intimated us anything officially. We are waiting for the fresh electricity bills and will see the effects. Once, we get it, we will move court against the power company,” Talwar said.

    “There is no use of staging demonstrations or burning electricity bills. All associations have decided to go for legal battle against the power utility. Moreover, there is also over 20% difference in power tariff for industries within Maharashtra. There should be uniform power tariff across the state. Otherwise, industries would move elsewhere,” he added.

    “We are upset with the fresh tariff hike. The power tariff for industries is higher in Maharashtra when compared to the neighbouring states. Hence, all associations have decided to go the legal way. We are also seeking legal opinion on the issue,” Banerjee said.

  • Commercial establishments continue disposing of waste in regular vans TNN | Apr 3, 2019, 11:29 IST

    Solid waste from hotels, restaurants, hostels and marriage halls and septage from various public toilets are u... Read More

    NASHIK: The hotels and restaurants in the city are flouting the waste collection rules with gay abandon by disposing garbage in the regular vans allotted for household waste instead of the bins that have been set up for the establishments to dispose off their waste.

    Solid waste from hotels, restaurants, hostels and marriage halls and septage from various public toilets are used at the waste-to-energy plant at NashikMunicpal Corporation's (NMC) solid waste management plant at Pathardi. Solid waste from households is sent to the compost plant at NMC's MSW to manufacture compost. Since solid waste of hotels is being handed over to domestic garbage vans, the waste-to-energy plant is hardly getting any waste to manufacture energy. The plant generating power from waste is producing only around 1,000 units per day while the target is 2,000-3,000 units.

    The German government's nodal agency Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit's (GIZ) funded the project in the city in particular, and as a pilot project for the country in general. The capacity of the plant is 250 kilo watt. Independent garbage vans have been provided for collecting hotel waste but as per sources in the plant, the output of the plant is lower than what was expected.

    Initially, the energy generated at the plant was lesser than expected due to improper waste segregation by hotels and restaurants. Now that the solid waste from the commercial establishments is being handed over to domestic garbage vans, it is deterring the plant from being utilised to its full potential.

    On questioning, a worker at a restaurant on Mahatmanagar to Gangapur Road said, "We were asked to segregate waste and hand it over to the garbage van. That's what we are doing." He was clueless about independent garbage collection vans for hotels. Another worker in a restaurant on College Road said that he too handed over segregated waste to a van that came around afternoon.

    "We are collecting segregated waste anyway. When we stop by residential complexes to collect waste, hotels, restaurants, hostels, marriage halls in the area also hand over segregated waste to us," said the attendant of a garbage van.

    An NMC official clarified that restaurants, hotels, hostels and marriage halls have to hand over dry waste to regular garbage vans but solid waste to the independent vans.

    Health officer at NMC Sachin Hiray said that they had informed all the commercial establishments to hand over solid waste to vans dedicated to them but the people working in these places may not be aware.

    "We will check once again and send a reminder to these establishments. We will also bring it to the notice of the contractors," said Hiray.


  • Solid waste management, processing have improved, claims civic body Sumita Sarkar | TNN | Updated: Apr 9, 2019, 10:51 IST

    The NMC claims that there has been a significant improvement in the functioning of its solid waste management ... Read More

    NASHIK: The NMC claims that there has been a significant improvement in the functioning of its solid waste management plant at Vilholi near Pathardi Phata.

    “Over the past year, there has been improvement in waste segregation and compost production. Even the demand for compost has increased and farmers from other states are visiting the plant to see its functioning and making of the compost,” said an NMC official.

    Recently, a team of farmers from UP visited the compost plant and have shown interest in buying the compost. Also, 35-40 government officials from different municipal corporations visited the plant.

    “Last year, it was 30-40 tonnes compost was obtained, now it has gone up to 60-70 tonnes, which is quite a good amount. The quality has also increased as waste segregation is good,” said the official.

    The civic administration said that strictly implementing the segregation of waste at the source has helped in increasing the quality of the compost.

    “We are getting a good response from the farmers for compost. Farmers from UP visited in batches over the past couple of months along with Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), German government’s nodal agency,” said Lt Col (Retd) Suresh Rege who is managing the solid waste plant.

    They also visited some grape farmers who use this compost. RCF is supplying this fertilizer to banana farmers in Jalgaon. It is cheaper than chemical fertilizers.

    Rege said that they were also planning to increase refuse derived fuel (RDF) from 20 tonnes to 80-100 tonnes.


  • MIDC imposes 50% water cut in Sinnar industrial area Tushar Pawar | TNN | Updated: Apr 9, 2019, 10:58 IST

    The MIDC has requested the WRD to release water into Chehadi weir so that it can restore normal supply

    NASHIK: The Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) has been forced to impose 50% water cut in Sinnar industrial estate as the water level in Chehadi weir, which supplies water to the area, has depleted.

    The MIDC has requested the water resources department (WRD) to release water into Chehadi weir so that it can restore normal supply to the industrial units. “The water cut is for a temporary period. We are trying our best to restore normal supply as soon as possible,” an MIDC official said.

    The industrialists met resident deputy collector (RDC) Ramdas Khedkar and urged him to release the water from Darna dam — the major source of water for Sinnar MIDC areas. The water from the same dam goes to Chehadi weir from where MIDC lifts it for supplying to the industrial units.

    Ashish Nahar, chairman of wine industries of Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce, Industries & Agriculture, said water supply in Sinnar industrial estate has been affected for the past two days.

    “We met Khedkar immediately and urged him to look into the issue. He has also assured us that it is not a water cut, but the situation will be overcome by releasing water from Darna dam into Chehadi weir,” Nahar said.

    According to him, industries in sectors B and C in the industrial zone are also getting water at low pressure. “We have been asking the MIDC to build a separate water tank so that these industries would get water at normal pressure,” Nahar said.

    The MIDC’s normal supply for the industrial units at Sinnar on a daily basis is 14 MLD (million litre per day). At present, only 7.5 MLD is being supplied.

    “We have written to the WRD urging them to release water from Darna dam. Water supply would be restored once water is released into the Chehadi weir,” added officials.

    The Sinnar industrial estate is spread over 516 hectares that houses are around 1,500 MSMEs and large industries.

  • Rainwater harvesting mandatory for big residential, commercial buildings Sumita Sarkar | Apr 16, 2019, 04:07 IST

    Rainwater harvesting mandatory, yet implemented in barely 1% of structures June Rain Could Have Met Much Of Ci... Read More

    Nashik: The civic administration would focus on strict implementation of rainwater harvesting in big residential societies and commercial complexes following a recent order by National Green Tribunal (NGT) directing all local governing bodies to take strict action against organisations not installing the rainwater harvesting systems.

    It is mandatory for all big residential societies and commercial complexes to have rainwater harvesting system and it has been found that most of them are not following the order. Such organisations and societies could face a fine up to Rs5 lakh.

    On March 28, the NGT directed the administration to slap a fine of Rs5 lakh on those who have not installed the rainwater harvesting system. All big residential societies, commercial complexes, hospitals, educational institutes, industries and other organisations should make provision for rainwater harvesting before this monsoon.

    “For building completion certificate (BCC) it is mandatory to have rainwater harvesting. Without that we do not give the BCC,” an NMC official said.

    Despite being mandatory, in many buildings the pit dug for rain water harvesting is covered with concrete after civic officials visit the spot and give BCC.

    “We have no provision to check if rainwater harvesting is operational. It is a policy decision. We will go through the NGT order and see in what way we can implement it,” the official said.

    Even the order of Bombay High Court during a hearing on river Godavari pollution had directed the Nashik Municipal Corporation to strictly implement rainwater harvesting.

    A sub-committee has also been formed for monitoring the implementation of HC’s order in the river pollution case under the revenue commissioner. During the sub-committee meetings, chaired by the revenue commissioner, it was reiterated that rainwater harvesting is mandatory within the city limits.

    “Rainwater harvesting is mandatory as per the law. Even in case of our public interest litigation on river rejuvenation, NEERI has suggested it. If rainwater harvesting is not done now then the groundwater table will go down. As it is, the water table has gone down significantly. We appeal to the NMC to implement the law before this rainy season to prevent water scarcity in future and to increase the groundwater level,” environmentalist Rajesh Pandit said.


  • Nashik: Clean water diverted to STP near confluence

    The 20-feet high waterfall at the confluence of Godavari river and its tributary Waghari

    NASHIK: The stretch from the Elephant bridge near Nag Chowk at Panchavati to the confluence of Godavari river with its tributary Waghadi is home to mounds of garbage and innumerable encroachments.

    There is a waterfall, around 20-feet high, near the confluence whose water has been diverted to the sewage treatment plant, which environmentalists claim have concealed the springs .

    Environment activists Nishikant Pagare, Amit Kulkarni, Sunil Pardeshi, Yogesh Barve, Vinod Sansare, Nilesh Dhuse, Vedprakash Vyas, Vishal Patil and others visited the aforementioned patch along the river recently.

    "There is a waterfall in this area on Waghadi river, like in Someshwar, which flows from a height of around 15-20 feet. There was no foam in the waterfall. The water has been diverted to the STP, as a result of which the live streams have been destroyed by the administration," said Pagare.

    In many places, besides encroachments on the riverbed, public toilets have been constructed on both sides of the bridge.

    "In some places, drainage pipes from these toilets are directly releasing sewage into the river. Drain water is also being released into the river. Some nearby houses have installed drainage pipes which are directly pouring into the river. Two cement pipes below the new vegetable market at Ganeshwadi releases the sewage water directly into Godavari, thereby affecting the natural flow of the river.These pipes carry drainage water, plastic and garbage along with the river water," said Pagare.

    The environmentalists said that the top portion of the waterfall has turned concrete. In some places, water can be seen sprinkling from the rocks, indicating that the natural streams have been stifled.

    "The waterfall can be developed into a tourist spot. The administration can keep the river clean by employing people and giving them the responsibility of ensuring river cleanliness. Since no foam can be spotted in the waterfall, it is safe to conclude that pure water is flowing from the top. This water should have been released into the river but instead, is being diverted to the STP along with sewage. Only sewage should have been diverted," said Pagare.

    An NMC official admitted that natural water was being diverted along with sewage. "Under the smart city plan, we are laying a pipeline from Gadge Maharaj bridge to both sides of Waghadi river, Laxman Jhula bridge. The work, which will be completed in a couple of days, will help arrest the water and only sewage will be diverted. This will start after the model code of conduct is lifted. Maximum issues will be resolved with the smart city works," said the official adding that the garbage and encroachments would also be cleared soon.

  • Construction of smart road likely to miss deadline Sumita Sarkar | Apr 19, 2019, 04:35 IST

    The officials are hoping that the second phase of the work will be completed at least before the monsoon

    Nashik: The Nashik Municipal Smart City Development Corporation Ltd (NMSCDCL), althought keen to ensure completion the smart road work before monsoon, is apprehensive that contractor could miss the deadline due to slow pace.

    The 1.1-km road from Ashok Stambh to Modak Point is being developed as a pilot smart road. The authorities had set March 31 deadline for the same. The contractor, however, failed to complete even one patch of the road by that period.

    NMSCDCL has served a notice to the contractor on April 15 for not meeting the deadline. The authorities have also decided to impose penalty on the contractor. “The penalty will be imposed depending upon the period of the delay. We will make that adjustment in his bill. The amount has not yet been decided, but the decision will be taken after the election,” said chief executive officer Prakash Thavil.

    He said that the contractor is expected to complete the road before rainy season. The deadline to complete first phase of the road was October 2018. It has been extended till January 31. The deadline for the second phase was March31. The first phase has been completed during this period with some finishing touches remaining. Now, the officials are hoping that the second phase of the road is completed at least before monsoon.

    In February, when principal secretary, planning department Sitaram Kunte, was in the city, he said that the contractor was not mobilised the way he should be. He had said that notice was being served to him for delay in completion and also asked the officials to impose fines on him.

    “There are many reasons for the delay. New problems emerge ver often. Some pipelines, underground channels, old sewage lines, old water supply lines had to be taken care of while constructing the road. Many small issues like these came up and delayed the work,” Thavil said.

    In addition, a British-era sewage line, unused pipelines and heavy traffic are other reasons that delayed the construction of Smart Road inordinately.

    Initially, due to heavy traffic they could not bring trucks of cement during the day, and hence, they brought it during the night after the traffic reduced.

  • Arrive on time or face penalty: Civic chief to garbage van operators
    Sumita Sarkar | TNN | Updated: Apr 28, 2019, 10:28 IST
    Representative image

    NASHIK: The Nashik civic body has directed the contractors to adhere to timings fixed for them to collect the garbage. The citizens had raised several complaints against the irregular timing of garbage vans.

    Though, the garbage vans visit the city a daily basis, the timings are irregular due to which citizens were facing problems. While the civic administration has already fixed the route for every garbage van to follow. The civic body has been claiming that they are tracking the vans through the GPS system. Supervisors and garbage van attendants say that they could be late by 30 minutes, at most, if they have to halt for a longer while at a particular place or if they have to refill the fuel tank. But, according to citizens' complaints, the vans were late by an hour or two.

    "Taking note of the complaints, the civic chief Radhakrishna Game on Friday issued strict warnings. He said that geological fencing should be done for garbage vans, that is, the garbage vans will have to follow the route earmarked for it. If a garbage van deviates from its jurisdiction then the respective contractor will be fined. From Sunday onwards, the timing of a garbage van in a particular area will be fixed," informed an NMC officer, adding that he had also issued strict warning to the contractors to lift all the garbage from roadsides.

    Due to the increasing number of complaints against garbage vans on varied issues, the civic chief said that the contractors will be paid only half the remuneration for the month of March.


  • Over 21 lakh north Maharashtra villagers struggle for water
    Ranjan Dasgupta | TNN | Updated: May 8, 2019, 11:31 IST

    More than 50% of these villagers are in Ahmednagar district, followed by Nashik.

    NASHIK: Over 21.25 lakh people in rural North Maharashtra face acute water crisis. More than 50% of these villagers are in Ahmednagar district, followed by Nashik. The tribal dominated Nandurbar district has the least number of affected villagers, and the acute water scarcity is restricted to a part of one taluka of the district.

    Latest data from the Nashik divisional commissionerate revealed that these affected villagers are from about 4,500 villages, big and small, in these five districts. Presently 1,226 tankers have been pressed into service, mainly in Ahmednagar and Nashik.

    With poor rain during the last monsoon and scorching conditions at present, all water sources have dried. “The situation in Ahmednagar and Nashik is grim. With the monsoon still more than a month away, the situation could further deteriorate,” a government officer said.

    As far as Ahmednagar district is concerned, the majority of 961 villages reeling under acute water scarcity are in the southern part of the district, which falls in a rain shadow region. There are no dams in that part, and residents depend on dams in Pune to meet water needs.

    The Nashik divisional commissionerate wrote to the district collectors of the five districts to send the amount they require for taking up water related schemes. “Once the details come to us, we would be sending it to the state government, with details of the money needed for these five districts to tackle water scarcity,” an official said.

    Sources in the chief minister’s office (CMO) said CM Devendra Fadnavis is likely to review the drought situation in the affected districts soon. “The chief minister will review water supply related schemes in each of these districts and issue instructions to the officials during the meeting,” a source in the CMO said.

    The Ahmednagar district guardian minister, Ram Shinde, admitted that the situation in his district as ‘worrisome’. “In our district we had taken up water conservation schemes in a big way. But since rains failed last year, these projects were no help. The district administration is going all out to help affected villagers by providing tankers and establishing cattle camps,” Shinde said.

    Even Nashik guardian minister and state water resources minister Girish Mahajan toured various parts of Nashik district on Monday and assured all assistance to affected villagers and cattle.

  • Malegaon’s water table drop worst
    TNN | Updated: May 13, 2019, 10:42 IST

    Representative image

    NASHIK: Malegaon taluka recorded the greatest drop in groundwater levels when compared with the five-year average, the Groundwater Survey and Development Agency report said.

    The taluka recorded drop in groundwater levels for the second consecutive year, officials from GSDA, which conducts observations of water levels in wells as part of the survey, said.

    There are 185 observation wells in the district, and a recent survey showed drop in the groundwater levels.

    The drop is also pretty steep, at 2.37 meters below its five-year average at Malegaon, which is quite alarming. What is more, the situation of Satana and Sinnar talukas is only slightly better.

    “Water levels dropped 2.17 meters below the respective five-year averages. This drop threatens to pull down the mean average itself,” an official at GSDA said.