Thousands of villagers residing in border areas of Karbi Anglong and Nagaon district have been affected by skeletal fluorosis due to ingestion of excess fluoride with drinking water generally obtained from underground source.
According to a study conducted by Akashi Ganga Welfare Society, an NGO based in Nagaon district of Assam and the Hojai sub divisional Public Health Engineering department, the most affected areas in Karbi Anglong were in North-Western part of the district namely Tekelanguin, Baghpani Taradubi, Tuplem, Garampani, Ratiagaon, Haldiati, Parakhowa where almost everyone was suffering from hydro-fluorosia.
Around one lakh (100,000) people have been affected in the area including areas of neighbouring Nagaon district.
In villages like Haldi Hati, Akashi Ganga, Topot Juri, Tongia, Niz-Parokhwa, Hiragaon etc. the age group affected ranged from three-year olds to 75 year-olds.
The matter was brought to light for the first time by A.B. Paul, the serving additional chief engineer of public health engineering department during his tenure in this district in 1999.
Paul said Fluorosis was non-curable ailment and its symptoms include severe anaemia, stiff joints, painful and restricted movement, mottle teeth and kidney failure.