Rawalpindi  - Several parts of Rawalpindi Cantonment Board (RCB) including Afshan Colony, Peoples Colony, Masrial Road, Dhoke Syedan, Bakra Mandi and adjoining areas are facing water scarcity as RCB has sealed 48 water hydrants in different areas of the cantonment limits.

The residents complained that some parts of Cantonment Board do not get adequate water supply as its consumption increases in the summer season and water scarcity comes up every year. Crowds can be seen at water filtration plants because some parts were reported without water for many days but the authorities are just making verbal claims of sufficient supply and of providing water by tankers. Shortage of water supply in Afshan Colony, Peoples Colony, Masrial Road, Dhoke Syedan and others areas of Rawalpindi Cantonment Board has made lives of the residents miserable.

Haji Iqbal, Abdul Waheed, Tanveer Iqbal and others said the residents are facing great difficulties due to water shortage but the authorities concerned are paying no heed towards the resolution of the issue. Several complaints have been registered but the water supply situation could not be improved, they added.

They informed that there is no regular water supply for their areas and the Department of Water Supply was playing the role of a silent spectator. The residents said that the authorities have failed to ensure regular supply in accordance with the demand of water, thus the residents are facing hardships to get clean water for drinking and other domestic use.RCB spokesman, Qaisar Mehmood while talking to APP informed that RCB has sealed 48 illegal water hydrants in different areas as the owners installed hydrants without the approval of the civic agency and were operating on a commercial basis. He said that the officials of enforcement and water branch led by Afzal Gondal conducted raids in Misrail, Dhoke Gujra, Chakra, People Colony, Tench Bhatta, Dhoke Syedan, Masrial Road and other areas and sealed the illegal hydrants as they were badly affecting the underground water bed that has already been disturbed due to excessive boring in many areas and is becoming a factor behind water shortage in the cantonment areas. It is feared that if appropriate measures are not taken, the residents of cantt areas would be left with a very low-level waterbed after a few years. Water conservationists have also warned that underground water level is decreasing year by year due to which no more tube wells should be established in the cantonment limits.

On the other hand, the RCB’s operation against water hydrants has further aggravated the water shortage problem in cantt areas as now, the private water tanker mafia is charging double rates claiming that the water is being brought in from far-flung areas.