In recent weeks, the Delhi government has initiated a series of measures that would result in widening and deepening the corporate control of water and water distribution in Delhi. Basically the government is considering handing over the distribution of water, billing, and revenue collection to large private corporations. The measures include the following:

– a 7 year contract has recently been awarded to a private company, SPML, to provide water tankers to South and Southwest Delhi, as a pilot project

– a 5 year contract has been awarded to Larsen and Toubro, for the supply, installation and maintenance of 2.5 lakh water meters in Delhi. Last year, the Tata company Tata Consultancy Services was contracted for water billing and the installation of water meters.

– the government has confirmed it is considering joint ventures with various companies for the treatment and distribution of water in Delhi. It has set up a high-powered committee to prepare a roadmap for involving private companies for the distribution of water and the consequent restructuring of the Delhi Jal Board. The committee is expected to submit its report in less than a month.

In 2005, such measures towards privatization, then supported by the World Bank, had been met with fierce resistance by many organizations, and the government had been forced to shelve their anti-people plans. Now once again, they seek to hand over one of the most precious commons resources – water – to large corporate entities. Such measures would only increase the price of water, and make the already unequal access to water for the poor even more difficult, even more time-consuming, even more unequal.

Friends, let us all get together and plan how we can oppose this creeping privatization of water in our city. We propose an initial meeting, which is open and inclusive. We would like all decisions about any future course of action to come out of such a meeting. Please do attend/ send your representatives/ tell other organizations and individuals about it.

Date: 11 June 2011, Saturday, 10.15 am

Venue: Room 304, Indian Social Institute, Lodhi Road

In solidarity,

Jal Samvaad


New Socialist Initiative

Socialist Front

For further information, please contact 9910476553 (Nagraj Adve), 43098327 (Arun Bidani), 9818905316 (Madhuresh), 9868940920 (Subhash Gatade), or 9266325654 (Rajni Kant)

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