Patna: The public health and engineering department on Thursday announced it will end water shortage in all rural areas before the Assembly elections in 2020.
It also pledged to end the water contamination problem this year in all areas under its jurisdiction.
In keeping with chief minister Nitish Kumar’s seven resolves, the government will connect all gram panchayats and wards with water supply pipelines before the next Assembly elections.
Minister Vinod Narayan Jha told reporters that the areas affected by arsenic water contamination are being identified.
The department will launch arsenic mitigation measures in these areas to resolve this public health issue. He added that the work is expected to be completed by the end of 2018. A three-level monitoring mechanism is being put in place to check the quality of water.
Principal secretary, PHED, Vinay Kumar said that over 2,500 wards and 300 gram panchayats had been identified as being affected by arsenic.
He also informed that the department had carried out repair of existing hand pumps with a focus on increasing their depth by adding more pipes so that clean water could be provided to residents.
The principal investigator of a research team, Ashok Ghosh, who is also the chairman of the Bihar State Pollution Control Board, said: “One of the main reasons why people are affected by arsenic is that the government handpumps have been dug shallow, at a depth of around 60-70 feet. It has to be dug deeper, up to 250 feet, to prevent arsenic contamination. Arsenic is usually present in the upper surface.”
The nine functioning laboratories under the water quality monitoring cell are accountable for quality of water in Bihar.
Courtesy: The Telegraph