Home » MCRC » Sewage Issues of Batla House go Unresolved: Residents Claim Neglect

Sewage Issues of Batla House go Unresolved: Residents Claim Neglect

A Local Resident Walks past an open sewer in Batla House - Photo by Qazi Zaid, New Delhi,13 Aug 2013

A Local Resident Walks past an open sewer in Batla House – Photo by Qazi Zaid, New Delhi,13 Aug 2013

For the second time this month, Akhtari Beghum, a resident of Batla House, had to go to the nearby Abidin Medical Center after her son Rehaan complained of stomach ache. The doctor prescribed medicines for stomach infection. Only a week back the same medicines had been prescribed. The infection had barely gone away before it came back much fiercer. There are many more Akhtari Beghum’s and Rehaan’s in the Batla House area of New Delhi.

According to Dr. Maroof who is a general practitioner in the area, many cases of patients, with diseases which are water borne, are reported on a regular basis. “We do not have the capability to treat people with serious diseases here, we refer them to the holy family hospital” Dr. Maroof said. The problem of contamination of drinking water is arising due to bad sewerage in the area. The water from the sewage pipes overflows due to high load and regular blockage in these pipes. Water starts oozing out into the roads and often gets mixed with the drinking water as both pipes are often laid close to each other.

Leaking Sewage Water On the Roads - Photo by Qazi Zaid, New Delhi,13 Aug 2013

Leaking Sewage Water On the Roads – Photo by Qazi Zaid, New Delhi,13 Aug 2013

Rafi Khan, a resident of the area and a member of the Khalilullah Residents Welfare Association (KRWA) says that the pipes have been laid out more than ten years back, according to the requirements of that time, today the population of the area has greatly increased and the pipes do not have the capacity to drain out all the water. In the times of rain the troubles are only multiplied. [ Nayeem Sahab jo KRWA ke president hain, unhone bohat complaints darj kii hain lekin koi kuch nahi karta ] “Nayeem sahab who is the president of KRWA has filed many complaints but no one does anything about it”, said Rafi Khan. He added that the problem cannot be solved by the residents by contributing money, but should be resolved by the authorities whose job is to provide basic facilities to the people.

Apart from mixing of the sewage and drinking water, at many places the Drainage pipes lay open and are a breeding ground for mosquitoes and diseases, adding to the woes of the residents. At many places the water seeps into underground electric pipes and poses a threat of electrocution to anyone who steps into the water. The local Congress Councillor Shoaeb Danish said that problem was not with the administration as Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and Delhi Jal board were well aware of the problem, but cannot act since parts of the area are not fully authorized yet.

In 2010, Archeological Survey of India (ASI) informed the ministry of Urban Development, Government of Delhi about its decision to provide a No Objection certificate (NOC) to 13 adjacent colonies. But the area of Batla House could not get an NOC because land survey of this colony was found impossible by the concerned authorities. A “Total Station Method” which is a way of aerial survey had been ordered. The survey is now complete and funds allocated but the development work still remains halted.

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20 thoughts on “Sewage Issues of Batla House go Unresolved: Residents Claim Neglect

  1. We should never take clean water for granted.

    Did you know:

    • There are nearly 1 billion people in the world that don’t have clean, safe water.
    • The women and children that collect water spend approximately 40 billion hours getting it.
    • This detracts from their ability to do other work, or get an education.
    • It takes $20 to supply one of these people with a clean water supply.
    • Each dollar spent provides an economic return of $12.
    • Not least because of the drop in medical care and infant mortality.
    • Can you spare a single dollar for this campaign to bring clean water to 50,000 people?
    • That’s less than a third of the price of a cup of coffee.
    • All money goes to providing water not to admin costs or profit.

    See http://my.charitywater.org/run-old-dog

    If you can’t spare a single dollar, please pass this message on to others that might.

  2. The third paragraph could have been shorter. And I think you need not mention Rafi Khan for about three times in the same paragraph (second last paragraph). You may have written ‘he adds’ instead. But it would have been nice to see some official’s (from the municipal Corporation or so) quote. Apart from that your story is quite well researched.

    • Thank you Sabeela for your inputs. Actually they were two paras initially .. i think they got clubbed together unconsciously after i placed the picture … ive worked on the suggestion about the Rafi Khan part…
      I believe the local congress Councillor was the right person to approach, which i did. MCD and Delhi jal Board aren’t a party until the area is fully authorised, which is still in the process of getting an NOC, although the survey is complete… The funds have been allocated by the Govt of Delhi and now are a responsibility of the MLA, for them to be utilized. I couldn’t get through to him.. will try and pursue this further..

  3. Finally someone has taken this issue. It’s commendable that you have chosen to write on this. I fully agree with you. I think whatever other ppl have written that I have missed could just say u did good. Some ppl I tell u.
    But I think this effort u have put brings up the desired results.
    I would like to meet a great writer like.

  4. A brilliantly researched news-piece. You have talked about all the details related to the story which one might be interested in knowing. Being a resident of this area myself I understand and empathise with you on this situation. This is a recurring problem in the area and the deteriorating sanitation would definitely lead to various health hazards as you talk about in the opening of the story. I hope this and other reports help raise the voice of this troubled locality. Well done and good luck.

  5. very nice …… but i think yo should have mentioned the population of the area so as to tell how many people are being affected…..

    • thanks Azher for your input
      there is no clear data about the existing population as many unregistered refugees and migrants reside in the area …
      although your input is valuable and i will try to get the official figure of the residents who are registered and have a residential proof from the area and share it..
      the actual population might differ from the figure …

  6. A lot of my relatives who live in the area face the same problems. Water-borne diseases are rampant in the Batla House area. I felt that using the example of Akhtari Begum and her ordeal, made the story interesting, and it’s a good way to start a story. The pictures are good as well, I only wished they were a little bigger.

  7. I have lived in Batla house for almost five years. Whether it’s monsoon time or just a normal season, water from sewage can be seen at every street. We used to call it ” The Venice of the South Delhi ” but of course with dengue and malaria mosquitoes. It’s quite normal to hear Shoeb Danish/Hashmi Sahab questioning MCD in this matter. It’s been written well and the transitions seem to work perfectly. Good piece. Although after reading this, people at Batla house might say ” isme naya kya hai, har saal ki kahani hai” but this leads to a thread of the officials who are responsible for this and not been working as they are expected. This piece is an act of creating awareness. Good luck and I hope the sight at Batla house’s streets gets better because trust me, it might ruin your day. Cheers.

  8. very nice mr.qazi….very true…last month I had a chance to go to my friends place who lives in a flat in batla house when I got there I saw that the whole area was inundated bcz of overflowing gutters after half an hour of rain…it was a very bad scene….its very nice that u came up with this issue….
    concerned authorities need t wake up….
    keep it up mr.qazi….

  9. The most common problem I would say in every city and in most of the localities, Good that you have highlighted it and I hope it reaches to the Delhi Municipality.
    Though I din’t get the last para. ..What does ASI has to do with this, and NOC in compliance with what.?

  10. thank you Uzair for you inputs and interest
    well, any area that has to be legalized or authorized has to be passed by govt bodies
    ASI is one of them… that ensures that the area (esp historically rich areas like delhi) is ok to be made into a colony and digging work be allowed for laying drainage pipes etc
    An NOC from departments is needed before the area be declared authorized and funds be allocated by the govt …
    i hope that answers your question ….

  11. Very well done zaid. I have been visiting batla house for many years now and I believe the living conditions are getting worse each year. The sewage issue is one of many but definitely one of the most important. Something that needs to be adressed immediately.

  12. A very well chosen topic, an issue that needs the attention of the government as well as the locals. The problem persists in the area for a very long time and keeps on growing with time. Apart from leading to various health hazards it also makes the locality look dirty and an unpleasant place to live. Hope the report helps the issue in any form.

  13. Nicely written and insightful. However, it brings to fore the much larger issue of self consciousness and awareness with in the society. Unless that issue isn’t addressed all the measures taken by the authorities or the govt wont go a long way to change the living conditions of the people. The underlying issues need to be addressed at the grassroots level and we will see improvement percolating its way up.

  14. I am amazed at the state of affairs we are living in. Its a very sad scenario for the people residing there, some serious action needs to be taken by the concerned authorities without any further delay. And I am shocked how the near by hospitals are not yet equipped with the medication for the water borne diseases which are spreading like fire.

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