The Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply & Sewerage Board (HMWS&SB) has announced a one-time settlement option for defaulters of water bills, the information about which is made available for public only after a lapse of 10 days.
A government order was issued on July 28 towards one-time settlement of pending water bills without penal charges. The offer came into force since August 1, without any public notice issued through media or any other source.
As per the GO, the scheme is open for both non-domestic and domestic categories and includes both State and central government departments. The offer is to waive the entire interest amount against payment of the entire principal amount. Authority for implementation of interest waiver is delegated to officials ranging from manager up to general manager, based on the amount of interest payable.
While the offer was to last till September 15, the information was shared with media through a press release only on Tuesday (August 11), after delay of 10 days since the start of the scheme. The government order was not placed on public portal, nor the announcement was made on the HMWS&SB’s website, to alert consumers. However, officials claim that consumers were notified through other means.
Ironically, the government orders in July asked the Managing Director, HMWS&SB, to ensure that the “entire scheme is taken up in a transparent manner without giving any scope of delay.”
On Tuesday, Minister for Municipal Administration and Urban Development K.T. Rama Rao released pamphlets, banners and posters of the one-time settlement scheme in his chambers.