Gas survivors irked over inaccurate report on quality of drinking water

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 26 Oct 2018 11:39:42


Staff Reporter,

On Thursday, leaders of organizations of survivors of the Union Carbide disaster in Bhopal charged the Bhopal Municipal Corporation of submitting a false affidavit regarding quality of drinking water. At a press conference organised they said that a formal complaint with proof of wrongdoing was submitted to the Chief Secretary more than a month back but there has been no response till date. According to Satinath Sarangi of the Bhopal Group for Information & Action, the matter of supply of piped drinking water to 42 communities known to be affected by groundwater contamination, but the authorities submitted a false report.

Under directions from the Apex Court, BMC officials collected samples of piped water from 42 communities on August 10 and sent them for analysis to the State Research Laboratory under the Public Health Engineering Department on the same day. The results were ready on August 14 and showed presence of faecal coliform in over 70 % of the samples. In two samples the faecal coliform, which is indicative of disease causing bacteria, was found to be 2400 times the permissible limit. They alleged that this was clear evidence of contamination of drinking water with sewage. Following this adverse report, they alleged the same BMC officials collected another round of samples from the same 42 communities on August 18 and sent them to their own Quality Control (Water) Laboratory whose results showed that all the samples were free from faecal coliform. The Bhopal Group for Information & Action is a part of the Monitoring Committee appointed by the Supreme Court in 2012 on supply of piped drinking water to contamination affected communities.

The organisation said that in addition to false affidavit on water quality, they have presented fictitious names and addresses of households in the report. Demanding immediate action against concerned officials leaders of Bhopal survivors’ organisations condemned the continued silence and inaction of the authorities on a crucial matter of public health involving well over 50,000 people. They have condemned authorities negligence towards the ever growing problem of poisoning of groundwater in Bhopal.