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Mewat women walk 5 km for water

GURUGRAM: The state government’s tall promise of uninterrupted water supply during Ramzan had fallen flat.

Mewat women walk 5 km for water

Forty villages of Mewat, especially in the Punhana block, are facing a water crisis. They have to walk several miles to fetch water. Tribune photo



Sumedha Sharma

Tribune News Service

Gurugram, June 10

The state government’s tall promise of uninterrupted water supply during Ramzan had fallen flat. Over 40 villages in Mewat are struggling with drought-like conditions.

Residents are up in arms against the local administration and the government for being forced to walk for miles to fetch water or buy it at high prices.

The wells in these villages have dried up and government water supply is erratic. Women in these villages have to walk over 4 km to get water from a jungle nearby or buy water at exorbitant rates.

“It has been 12 years of water supply only on paper. There are no pipelines and wells have dried up. We have to walk to the Aravalis to get water from channels and wells there. Once in a while, we pool money to get a water tanker, which costs over Rs 2,000 this season,” said Aftab, a resident of Aklimpur.

The situation was no better in villages like Karheri. Women had been trudging 5 km daily to get water.

“It is Ramzan and we consume more water. We have cut down on bathing and washing, but need water to drink. There is no water supply or groundwater. The channels and rivulets nearby are all dry. We are facing a drought, but it has not been recorded by officials,” said Munshad of this village.

Villagers claimed that a majority of pipelines had been broken midway by the influential to water fields.

“Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar promised unobstructed water supply during Ramzan, but what happened thereafter? Mewat is the government’s stepchild, where getting clean drinking water has become a luxury. It is strange that the local MP has nothing to say or do about it,” said Congress leader Aftab Ahmed.

Mewat had grappled with water scarcity for irrigation and human consumption for decades. A majority of villages depended on wells and channels in jungles.

The district administration had, over the years, identified 400 villages facing scarcity of water, but nothing much had been done to mitigate the suffering.

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