Municipal authorities in Hyderabad, the capital of India's Andhra Pradesh state, have launched a project to determine the extent of unaccounted for water in the city and bring it down to manageable levels.
The project ultimately aims to plug leaks and minimize losses in the distribution system.
The Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board last week invited private consultants to submit expressions of interest for a pilot project in two divisions of the city where the rate of water loss is very high.
A board official told OOSKAnews that the consultants would be shortlisted by the end of the year. Seven companies, including Tata Consulting Engineers and Malasia's Ranhill Water Services, have submitted bids so far.
The winning consultant will initially carry out surveys, measure levels of unaccounted for water and determine what improvement measures will be needed.
A second phase of the project will explore all sources of water supply and identify suitable locations for bulk flow meters.
The total cost of the project has not yet been announced.
In several areas of Hyderabad, the rate of unaccounted for water is over 50 percent, with illegal connections costing the the utility hundreds of dollars each year.
The city has a population of more than 7.7 million people, according to the 2011 census. The areas where the pilot project will be carried out are home to more than 10 percent of them.
The Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board supplies 340 million gallons of water per day to these areas, but it is only able to account 170 million gallons per day.
This story is brought to readers free in association with Singapore International Water Week.