East Civic Body announces 5% rebate on property tax to promote water harvesting

In association with ‘Jal Shakti Abhiyan’, East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) on Monday passed a resolution whereby the Cooperative Group Housing Societies (CGHS) under their jurisdiction would receive a 5% rebate on the property tax on undertaking the initiative of rainwater harvesting in their premises.  The announcement came in line with the BJP Councillors moving the proposal to conserve rainwater fro community and personal uses rather than preventing the valuable resource from going down the drain. The resolution will be examined and approved by the East Delhi Municipal Commissioner Dilraj Kaur. 

Under East Delhi’s Municipal Corporation’s jurisdiction, in the trans-Yamuna area, there are 700-800 CGHS; water harvesting undertaken by these number of CGHS would be extremely beneficial to combat the increasing problem of depleting groundwater table in trans-Yamuna area. Aparna Goel, the BJP councilor from the IP Extension area, who moved the proposal said, “Though close to the Yamuna, the groundwater table of east Delhi has been steadily depleting. We saw media reports of the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) submitting a study to the Supreme Court that even the Shahdara district is over-exploited.”

Nirmal Jain, the leader of East Corporation Head added that the reason for the depleting groundwater table is the lack of piped water supply in all homes thereby leading to the increased use of tube wells. He said that the project would be first as a pilot project and then could be extended to private residential areas. 

The Bureaucratic wing of the Corporation, however, said that if the proposal were to pass then it would make a huge dent in the property tax earnings of the cash-strapped corporation. An Official said, “But we think it is a good cause for which this money can be sacrificed,” an official said. Experts commented that many housing societies could set up harvesting structures only for obtaining the 5% rebate, thus regular pre-monsoon and post-monsoon checks must be conducted on the pits to ensure its usage, and also to ensure that only clean rainwater is being harvested in them.       


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