Bandipora villagers forced to drink filthy water
Filtration plants non-functional
Bandipora, Mar 3: Over 30,000 residents of Bandipora and adjoining 80 villages are being forced to consume muddy and contaminated drinking water as the water treatment plants have virtually become non-functional here in this North Kashmir district.
The villagers, who submitted a petition to the officials concerned told Greater Kashmir that only two filtration plants in the district are either non-functional or not maintained properly due to the official apathy, which compels thousands of residents to relay on the polluted drinking water.
The villages including Nathpora, Watpora, Ongam, Khenusa, Madar, Kunan, Arin, Nadihal, Malangam, Gurdal and Kaloosa are the worst hit where pipes are now blocked due the increasing mud flowing with the water.
Though the state government had spent crores of rupees on the water treatment plants installed at Ahimsharief village and on hilltop at Nowpora in the main town but it hardly functions to the satisfaction of the residents.
Many residents said when it rains the half-functional treatment plants stop functioning and muddy and contaminated water is supplied to them.
“During rains we are being forced to use the muddy and contaminated water,” said Muhammad Arif Lone.
“The water tanks maintained by the PHE (Public Health Engineering) Department are in a bad shape. There is no regular cleaning of these tanks. Most of the water tanks are full of mud, leaves and insects,” said Muhammad Sayed Beigh residing in the proximity of the water tank in Bandipora.
Official sources revealed that the state government had spent over Rs 12 crores on the water treatment plant, but in the absence of proper maintenance and repair the plant was not functioning to the satisfaction of the consumers.
Residents have urged authorities to make alternative arrangement for supplying drinking water to the villages as the reservoirs have become inoperable.
The Department of PHE has installed a number of pipes for villagers, which remain blocked due to the increasing mud.
“PHE installed new pipes in Nathpora but all in vain as mud has blocked the pipes leaving residents without water,” said Muhammad Amin wani, adding, “The water scarcity during the summer turns so acute that women are forced to fetch water for daily domestic use from a roadside filthy pool.”
Villagers in Madvan, Preng, Aythmullah, Ajar, Sonarwani, Lawyapora, Dachigam, Nuso and Papchan allege that supply of drinking water was not sufficient in the area and in the absence of traditional water resources they have to use water from the filthy pool.
“We have insufficient supply of drinking water though residing close to the filtration plant,” said Younus Ahmed of Preng village, adding, “The pressure of the piped water, which is supplied on alternate days for 30 minutes, is so low that only a few buckets can be filled.”
Confirming that Bandipora is being supplied with polluted water, District Development Commissioner Ghulam Muhammad said, “There is lacunae in the water supply system in the area and government is trying to repair all the water supply system in coming months. I am looking into the matter and very soon the problem will be solved by renovating the non-functional filtration plants.”
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Mar 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Mar 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 4 Mar 2011 00:00:00 IST
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