SC clears way for WASA to collect hiked water tariff

FE REPORT | Wednesday, 1 July 2020

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on Tuesday stayed for 16 weeks a High Court order that issued injunction on a decision of Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (WASA) to hike the price of water by 25 per cent from April 01 this year.
Chamber judge of the Appellate Division Justice Md Nuruzzaman passed the order after hearing on a petition filed by Dhaka WASA seeking stay on the HC injunction order.
The apex court order has cleared the way for Dhaka WASA to implement the decision of 25 per cent hike in water price that it fixed earlier, said concerned lawyers.
Following a writ petition filed by a Supreme Court lawyer, Tanvir Ahmed, on June 15, the HC bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim on June 22 issued an injunction till August 10 on Dhaka WASA's decision.
Mr Tanvir said that there is no legal bar for Dhaka WASA to collect the hiked water tariff following the apex court stay order.
Attorney General Mahbubey Alarm appeared for Dhaka WASA, while Barrister Aneek R Haque represented the writ petitioner.
Advocate Tanvir said that Dhaka WASA had increased the water tariff by five per cent on September 01 last year. It has further increased the water price by 25 per cent since April 01 this year by a notification issued on February 26, which was reported in different newspapers.
The advocate said most of the countrymen are now facing serious financial crises and amid coronavirus pandemic, hiking the water tariff is not only illegal but also a heartless act.
WASA can increase the water tariff by only five per cent in consultation with the government as per section 22 of the Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority Act, 1996, the writ petitioner added.