WASA directed not to increase water rates

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Rawalpindi District Coordination Officer (DCO) Rashid Mehmood has directed WASA not to increase water rates in the city.
The DCO directed the WASA officials to conduct a survey to estimate the total number of water consumers in the city and to decide about increase in rates after the survey.
These directives were issued in a meeting presided over by the DCO the other day. It was informed in the meeting that last time the price of water was increased to 25 percent in 2009 and had not been increased after that despite the rise in the prices of POL and salaries of the employees.
The DCO postponed the matter of price of water till the next meeting when decision in this regard will be made in the light of report of the survey about the total number of commercial, domestic, bulk and industrial consumers.
Separately, the Rawalpindi Development Authority (RTA) has agreed to increase water and sewerage tariff from Rs 100 to Rs 300 on Thursday.
Before the approval and issuance of notification in this regard, meeting was postponed until May 28, which aimed to mull over the positive as well as negative points of the decision.
Sources said that WASA has been mulling over how the approval be sought from caretaker government on this count. The officers apprehended that WASA may face crisis if it did not increase the tariff.
Increase in tariff rates from 100 up to 300 will be only for domestic consumers while a majority of the respective officers were agreed to increase the tariff rates from Rs 50 to Rs 70 percent for commercial consumers, sources said.