Supply of water containing arsenic, fluoride.
SHILLONG, Dec 27: A day after the National Green Tribunal (NGT) exposed PHE Minister Marcuise Marak’s unfounded claims that the water supplied to residents in Shillong is safe for consumption, the Federation of Khasi Jaintia and Garo People (FKJGP) asked the state government to take serious note of the tribunal’s findings and address the issue early.
The NGT issued a notice to the state government highlighting the presence of arsenic and fluoride in the water supplied to residents.
“We would like to thank the NGT for taking an initiative on an issue that we highlighted. The government was adamant and tried to cover it by saying it through the Minister concerned that the water is safe to drink,” FKJGP president Dundee Khongsit said.
“Now that the NGT has intervened and asked the government to rectify it, I hope the public interest will be served. However, we are not going to sit idle. We will take steps to ensure that people have access to safe drinking water,” he said.
The FKJGP asked the government to immediately address the issue, stating that the people of the state have every right to get safe drinking water.
Khongsit recalled that the organisation had collected 46 water samples from different localities of Shillong earlier this year after the public had complained about the quality of water and 44 were found to be unsafe for drinking during tests conducted at the State Food Testing Laboratory of the Commissionerate of Food, located at Pasteur Hills.
The report revealed that the 44 samples showed the presence of coliform and E. coli (Escherichia coli) organisms with low pH value, high turbidity and iron content above the prescribed limit.
However, the PHE Minister had downplayed public concerns and gave his department a clean chit. He had claimed that the department examines the water at the Mawphlang treatment plant before supplying it.
*Original full-text article online at: https://theshillongtimes.com/2023/12/28/fkjgp-asks-govt-to-take-note-of-ngt-findings/