Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, November 16
After topping the list of water-stressed states/UTs, Chandigarh has now figured among 14 state capitals where tap water is ‘undrinkable’.
This was revealed in a study on quality of piped drinking water being supplied in 21 cities across the country. It was released by Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ram Vilas Paswan at New Delhi today.
The study found Mumbai as the only metropolitan city where it was safe to drink tap water. Its samples complied with the standards outlined for tap water by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS).
Not even a single sample drawn from 13 state capitals - Chandigarh, Gandhinagar, Lucknow, Jammu, Jaipur, Dehradun, Chennai, Kolkata, Thiruvananthapuram, Patna, Bhopal, Guwahati and Bengaluru — complied with the requirements.
However, MC officials claimed that they have country’s best drinking water quality in Chandigarh. On the study findings, they said there could be some technical issue with the particular water supply at the time when the samples were taken.
The Executive Engineer concerned, Harish Saini, said, “I am yet to see the report. We will see on what basis the survey was done. Ours is the country’s best drinking water. After every two hours, sampling of treatment plant is done at the Sector 39 water works. Contamination of water is checked even at consumer level. At tubewells too, we have chlorinators.”
The BIS, a national body that makes quality standards for products and services, had conducted the study.
According to the BIS, there are 48 parameters for testing tap water quality. These included radioactive substance. However, radioactive substance test and free residual chlorine were excluded in the current study. In
the first stage, chemical, bacteriological and toxic substance test were conducted on the samples.
In August this year, the World Resource Institute, an international think tank, in its report found Chandigarh the most water-stressed in the country. At global level, India was ranked 13th while neighbouring Pakistan 14th in the water-stressed category.
I am yet to see the report. We will see on what basis the survey was done. Ours is the country’s best drinking water.— Harish Saini, Executive Engineer
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