SHILLONG, Oct 03: Seeking the validation of the drinking water supplied to the people of Shillong, the Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM) has urged the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) government to constitute a special inquiry towards this end.
In a memorandum submitted to the PHE Minister Samlin Malngiang on Wednesday, KHNAM state youth wing president Thomas Passah said, “Safety and health of the general public is the most import responsibility of any Government. It is requested that a special enquiry be constituted to verify the quality of drinking water supplied to the general public especially from localities located at Shillong city.”
He said that the water supplied to households appeared to be greasy or oily which have brought fear to the minds of many.
He said that party had also approached the previous government on several occasions in previous years after substantial proved was found that the drinking water supplied to the citizen of the state is unsafe or contaminated.
According to him, concerns over the PHE Mawphlang for not having a Microbiologist in its establishment to certify quality of drinking water was also raised from time to time.
The pathetic and unhygienic condition of pipelines supplying water to adjacent localities from Khlieh Iew was also intimated to the Government for necessary action.
Referring to an RTI reply received recently, Passah said, “It has confirmed that till date the PHE Mawphlang still do not have a Microbiologist or an Assistant Analyst on its strength since the matter is pending with the Government of Meghalaya and MPSC.”
The greasy or oily water received at the tabs of various households has made many worried and the quality of safe drinking water is under question, he said.
Reminding that water is the very basic of life and is the foundation for human survival and development, he said, “Safe drinking water is recognized as basic human rights and a cost effective measures of reducing disease (i.e preventative medicine) therefore, we strongly suggest to the present Government to ensure safe drinking water to the public.”
Meanwhile, the KHNAM-SYW demanded the department to ensure a Microbiologist needs to be made available at PHE Mawphlang to check and certify the quality of water supplied to the public every day.
It also suggested that pipelines supplying drinking water to localities needs to be improved immensely while adding that the government needs to have a water policy or a Drinking water Guidelines and regulations to ensure that all human beings within a State have access to safe drinking water.
Passah also said that the Government of India has recognized the importance of 24x7 supplies. The Ministry of Urban Affair Development has made 24x7 water supplies a benchmark for water providers and has also issued a Guidance Note on Continuous Water Supply.
The important of Continuous water supply is critical for the people’s health. When the pipes remain full, the water remains clean. Under intermittent service when pumping stops ground water from surrounding areas can be sucked in bringing with it wastewater from drains. If the pipes are continuously filled with water there is less chance of such contamination, he said.