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Srinagar sewerage drainage system will be upgraded

SRINAGAR: Senior government officials, eminent development experts and engineers discussed various facets of sewerage and drainage system of Srinagar city at a seminar organized in Srinagar.

The workshop titled ‘Sewerage and Drainage issues of Srinagar’ was organized by the Institution of Engineers (India) J&K State Centre in collaboration with Divisional Administration, Kashmir. at the IEI auditorium at Sonwar, Srinagar.

Former Advisor to Governor, Khurshid Ahmad Ganai, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole, Commissioner SMC, Athar Aamir Khan, Director Disaster Management, Aamir Ali attended the workshop. Among others, Chief Engineer I&FC, Iftikhar Kakroo and Chief Engineer R&B were present.

Former Commissioner, SMC Dr. G.N Qasba, Er Arjimand Hussain Talib, International Development Specialist and Founder Ziraat Times, Er Ahsan Ul Haq Superintending Engineer Drainage SMC, Er Sheikh Sajid Yaseen, AEE UEED, Naresh Handa, Addl General Manager NBCC, Er Mohammed Ashraf Fazili, spoke on the occasion.

Addressing the workshop, Khurshid Ahmad Ganai, who was the Chief Guest on the occasion,  said that the issues need to be dealt at house hold level as the population of Srinagar city is increasing at an alarming rate due to which there is a huge increase in the waste production.

He stressed that not only Srinagar city but also other major towns in J&K should be developed on modern lines to ensure effective management of waste products. He underscored the need for giving focused attention towards proper and viable measures for better sewerage and drainage system in Srinagar.

The Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole who also spoke on the occasion, said that various projects have been undertaken by the administration for improving sewerage and drainage system but more needs to be done.

He said we need to prioritize the issues for proper solutions and public/ private partnership is very much important for better results. He assured the gathering attending the workshop that the suggestions put forth by them would be looked on priority for better drainage and sewerage system in the Srinagar city.

Commissioner SMC, Athar Aamir Khan congratulated the Institution of Engineers for organising such a workshop and said that storm water and wastes are a resource and need to be harvested in a better way by segregating the wastes at home and changing them to manures by various methods.

He stressed on the collective approach of all the departments for the implementation of the projects and assured SMC would be always open for all the recommendations and suggestions to improve sewage and drainage system in the City. He said capacity building and awareness is important in this regard.

Director Disaster Management/ Chairman Institution of Engineers, Aamir Ali in his welcome address gave a detailed overview about the sewage and drainage system of the Srinagar City. He said that Srinagar City is located on relatively flat terrain and the therefore the drainage system of the city is either Lift system or Gravity system and at a few places it is a combination of Lift-cum-gravity system, but in all cases the storm water is discharged into the water bodies.
He said that as per the storm water drainage master plan, Srinagar City is divided into three drainage zones and there are about 50 existing drainage schemes having more than 100km of primary and secondary storm water drains.

Er Arjimand Hussain Talib, while calling for a comprehensive and integrated strategic plan for the development of sewerage and drainage system for Srinagar city, said that such a plan would require to factor in financing, revenue generation, capacity of the project implantation systems and ecological considerations like recharge of ground water and bringing in the private sector to harness economically-viable elements like bio-fertilizers from sewage treatment systems.

While terming the current financing models of such public services challenging considering the loan conditions and debt obligations, he called for a new and sustainable approach on financing of such public projects in J&K. He also made a fervent call to consider a Divri Stone Private Investment Initiative for large-scale private investment for supplying divri stones to the public sector for creating durable, all-weather roads in Jammu & Kashmir,

Divisional Commissioner Kashmir P. K. Pole and SMC Commissioner, Athar Aamir Khan on the occasion said they would seriously consider Mr Arjimand’s proposal for a Divri Stone Private Investment Initiative for Kashmir for all-weather, durable roads and local job creation in J&K.

Former Commissioner, Srinagar Municipal Corporation, G N Qasba, speaking on the occasion while mentioning about the key achievements made in development of Srinagar in recent years despite many challenges, emphasized on an integrated approach on drainage and sewerage management factoring in solid waste management as well as the latest technology trends in this sector.

Earlier, Aamir Ali informed that around 89 dewatering pumping stations exist in Srinagar City, having 69 permanent dewatering stations and a sizable number of mobile dewatering pumps, which are manned by the Drainage Division of the Srinagar Municipal Corporation. Majority of these pumping stations have been retrofitted post floods and raised above the HFL, and even provided with DG sets, with funding from either ADB or World Bank.

The program was coordinated by Er Aaquib Sultana Waheed Deva, Honorary Secretary IEI.

Senior officers of various Engineering wings, besides staff and students of National Institute of Technology, Srinagar and SSM College of Engineering and Technology Parihaspora also collaborated and participated in the workshop.

Earlier, the dignitaries planted saplings of Chinar and other plants in the premises of the Institution of Engineers on the occasion of Chinar Day.

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