NEW DELHI: The Karbi Anglong and Nagaon districts of Assam are in the grip of hydroflouroside or flourosis, caused by the high content of flouride in drinking water.

The fluoride content was found to be as high as 23 mg per litre in some areas of the districts, according to a survey by the Public Health and Social Works department. And, the cases of flourosis are increasing at an alarming rate.

Flourosis causes anaemia, joint pains, premature falling of teeth, loosening of muscles, dysfunctional kidneys and the like.

The chief engineer at the public health department, A.B. Pal, said of the 2,300 people spoken to during the survey, more than 600 were using water which had fluoride levels between 5-15mg per litre.

Initially, this disease was found in the Tekelangui area where people were found to be suffering from dental and muscular ailments because of the presence of high level of flouride in their bodies.

Though authorities were aware of the presence of high levels of flouride in the drinking water in many villages of the two districts, no remedial steps were taken. Besides, the constant use of underground water only aggravated the problem.