ALLAHABAD: The district authorities have dispatched over 1,000 field testing kits and study materials to 20 blocks to check water quality in 1,425 villages. The district aims to check areas where ground water contains arsenic or fluoride substances.
District Development Officer (DDO) RC Pandey told TOI “after dispatching water field testing kits and holding subsequent training sessions, the exercise to test potable water start in villages from the first week of June.”
Describing it as an attempt to ensure clean drinking water to villagers, he said that the exercise also aimed at educating them about methods of checking the quality of water resources especially hand-pumps in villages.
Pandey further maintained that rural development department has launched the exercise with the help of Jal Nigam. He added that Jal Nigam and block officials would test the water quality in villages and train selected villagers about the same.
The villagers would also be informed about the adverse effects of contaminated water and other preventive measures.
Pandey, meanwhile, said under the project, quality of 20 water resources in each of 1,425 villages would be checked on scheduled dates. There people from each block have been nominated for the exercise. The project aims to improve the quality of life by enhancing access to better water supply and sanitation facilities in rural areas ensuring sustainability.
The department with the help of block development officer and local panchayat has also identified water resources. He said that handpumps were a major source of potable water in villages. The testing kits would reveal that whether the handpump water is suitable for drinking or not.
Information, education and communication activities are already underway in rural pockets to promote community participation in the exercise of ensuring water safety and security at grass-root level. Officials said other exercises like identifying bacteria in water, rain water conservation & collection, water pollution in terms of biological and chemical, right way of water testing, pipeline supply and sanitation have also been taken to task to ascertain the quality of water resources.
Handpumps that supply water laced with arsenic or fluoride particles have already been identified in hilly region of the district. Such handpumps have been painted with red colour to warn people against using its water.
Villagers would also be apprised of methods to remove fluoride (with the help of fluoridearsenic removal filters). They would be advised to consume eatables full of vitamins like C, E, Iron calcium and anti-oxidants.
“If there is fluoride in water, neither its colour nor its taste smell changes” said an expert adding “boiling has no impact on fluoride.” Prevention is the only key of checking fluorosis disease as there is no treatment of the disease, he added.
Similarly, villagers are also being advised to use water from deep safe wells as it is devoid of arsenic particles. Besides, eatables full of anti-oxidants like onion, mango, ginger, papaya, carrot, garlic and cucumber should be a regular part of food intake.