Saturday, August 1, 2009

Supply safe drinking water first in Problematic villages: Lok Satta

The Lok Satta Party today wanted the Government to install reverse osmosis (RO) plants only in problematic villages and not randomly at the rate of one in every mandal of the State.

Talking to the media, party spokespersons Katari Srinivasa Rao, V. Laxman Balaji, Technical Advisor K. Sivarama Krishna welcomed the Government decision to go in for RO water purification plants, originally proposed by the Lok Satta in its 50 irrevocable guarantees to the electorate.

But they pointed out that the Lok Satta envisaged such plants only in habitations where the water is not potable because of salinity or excess of fluoride content, or contamination by industrial effluents. “The Government proposal to install at least one plant in every mandal of the State is ad hoc and unscientific.” They recalled that a committee appointed by the Government had suggested that a comprehensive survey on the quality of drinking water should precede installation of RO plants.

The Lok Satta leaders said that installation of the plants could be done without waiting for a comprehensive survey if the Lok Satta guidelines were followed.

Safe drinking water constituted only about ten percent of people’s water requirements. But they needed water for other purposes too. Such water too should be clean. The Government should focus on supplying filtered water for such purposes.

On the Government move to collect one or two rupees for a 20 liter can of protected water, the spokespersons said an ideal solution to the installation and maintenance of RO plants lay in making a per capita of grant of Rs.1000 to every village/municipal ward/division. A village with a population of say 5000 will receive a grant of Rs.50 lakh. “Let the villagers decide how they should utilize the amount. They may install an RO plant and supply water at rates decided by them or build a school or hospital or road.”

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