Devotees visiting Shirdi will not have to buy bottled drinking water now, as arrangements are being made to install a water purification plant and make free clean drinking water available to pilgrims. This has been made possible as donors have come forward to install the plant and the temple trust has agreed to the proposal.
The Shri Saibaba Sansthan Trust has approved the proposal to install a water purification plant in Shirdi, to make pure water available to all free of cost, informed trustee Ashok Khambekar. The Raju Vegasana Group, a broadband service company in Hyderabad, has approached the Shri Saibaba Sansthan Trust and offered to install the water purification plant — on the same lines as in Tirupati.
In a meeting, the trust approved the proposal and the modalities of erecting the plant. The supply and distribution of water will now be worked out jointly by the donor company and the water supply and the trust’s construction departments. A similar water purification plant is functional in Tirupati, built at a cost of Rs 3.5 crore, and serving 3 lakh people every day.
In Shirdi about 50,000 people on an average visit the temple from Monday to Friday, and 1.5 lakh on weekends. On special occasions, this figure goes to 3 lakh. The water purification plant will be designed to cater to the large numbers and will also cover the prasadalaya, hospital, temple premises and the dharamshala. The project cost in Shirdi is estimated at Rs 2.5 crore and the Raju Vegasana Group will donate the plant, which is likely to be functional in a year.
Director of the company, Narasimha Raju, told trustees that with such an installation, no devotee would have to buy drinking water Presently, packaged drinking water worth Rs1 lakh is sold in Shirdi every day, estimate traders.