As rare as safe drinking water!
Post by RK News on Thursday, August 10, 2023
The recent jaundice outbreak at Riyar area of khansahab in Budgam District has claimed the life of a 10 year old boy so far. Directorate of Health services has deputed many health teams to the concerned village to monitor the situation. As per the health officials 1778 people got screened and 643 blood samples have been taken for further investigations. The locals of the area are blaming Jal Shakti Department for failing to provide safe drinking water to the village. Health experts are of the opinion that annually many deaths take place in Kashmir as a result of unsafe and impure drinking water. One may ask the authorities of this department about the performance in providing safe drinking water to the people of this UT. It is saddening to find that most of our villages are still not supplied the pure drinking water. The result of this is in front of us all. As per many independent surveys, it is revealed that more than 68 % population living in far flung areas is either using contaminated water or has no access to drinking water. Furthermore, every year a large number of people suffer from various gastrointestinal ailments which include cholera and jaundice. Although we have always found our government talk high about issues related to the development but it looks agonizing that even in 21st century we are not able to provide safe drinking water to our people especially in the far flung areas. Boastful expressions apart, truth of the matter remains that government and the concerned department is responsible for all the ailments and deaths caused due to contaminated water. In the absence of safe drinking water supply, rural population opts for the natural sources of water, like rivers, brooks and springs. However the level of pollution that has infested this water makes it dangerous for health. In this situation government must press the concerned department into action and find ways and means to provide safe drinking water to the rural population. Given the magnitude of the problem and its ramifications for the whole society, government needs to be very quick in its response towards this crisis. The government must adhere to its basic function of providing people with basic amenities of life like clean and hygienic water. Furthermore, cleaning of reservoirs and other essential tasks related to water supply are to be monitored regularly so that people are able to survive and thrive in a healthy environment. If J&K UT had arid features, or been a desert, it would have made some sense, but with rich resources and abundant water reservoirs, it is an incongruity and a shame to know that people are dying due to diseases directly attributable to unsafe drinking water.