Sewage Treatment Plant at Bhagwati Nagar

How come a plant having been built with a huge cost of Rs. 12 crore in 2010 is found not working for more than 10 months after ‘functioning’ for eight years and no one seems to be concerned about it ? Readers may recall that the 10 million litre per day (MLD) capacity Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) at Bhagwati Nagar, Jammu was commissioned in the year 2010 which has totally become non functional and idle since late last year and the concerned department has taken no steps in putting it back to use. Pollution Control Board readings showed that the plant was not working as it showed negative outputresults and failed on the set standard parameters.
Were some innovative and improved works required to be undertaken so as to make it responsive to the PCB readings ? When was it detected that the plant, though apparently working, was, in fact, not treating the drainage and waste water at all , as per specifications? For the period of its operation, was performance and technical audit regularly conducted and whether on set parameters of the PCB , the plant was found working ? Whether there was some understanding with the authorities of the UP Jal Nigam and the UPSAB Technology experts to carry out periodic inspections of the plant and suggest remedial suggestions in case of any defects in the treatment of waste material? While these questions need specific answers , the fact of the matter is that had these points of vital importance been given any credence and heed, most probably the treatment plant would have not dived deep into dormancy as at present.
If at some stage, it was found that the plant needed renovations and up-gradation and reportedly sanction too was accorded to it for undertaking the requisite mechanical and civil works and the matter progressed even up to the levels of floating of tenders, why the entire exercise was later abandoned ? A natural corollary of events to save a plant or to put it back to use by a little more investment in advanced mechanical works beside other things, to value and save Rs. 12 crore spent on its coming up . By allowing the plant to remain idle and non functional was in simpler parlance, tantamount to wasting of Rs. 12 crore . Taking decisions and taking them in time is an ingrained characteristics of the functioning of able bureaucrats and Heads of the Departments . In fact, that is how their utility in Government service is felt and hence their contribution assessed which means that they really perform. In the instant case, a decision towards improvement and kick starting its required function, taken in September 2019 has been kept on hold for reasons unknown. That augurs not well for anybody in the administrative system.
The issue has different connotations too. With the plant in question in doldrums , the entire load of sewage has been put on 30 MLD Sewage Treatment Plant which was constructed by the ERA in 2014 to cater to the needs of the areas falling in Janipur, Sarwal, Rehari, Shakti Nagar , Akhnoor Road localities etc. In other words , it means that the 30 MLD plant was facing the risk of putting to avoidable strains jeopardising its functioning as it is currently working on full capacity. In fact, the plant at Bhagwati Nagar was an improvised version of the 30 MLD plant as being based on most efficient and economical technology available in the country. A culture of looking after and properly maintaining the projects like the ones under reference needed to be developed as these projects are national assets doing works looking apparently very simple ones but in fact, being very important and critical by nature. Periodic inspections and technical cum performance audits on regular basis would enable the authorities to fix a small problem well in time which if ignored initially, could render the asset concerned to inoperative and unusable stage. We urge the authorities concerned to look into the entire issue with intent to resolve the same at an early date.