Over 16,000 habitations hit by water contamination: Govt

With thousands of habitations being affected by water contamination, Health Minister J P Nadda today said this was leading to complications and even death and stressed the need for intensive co-ordination with various entities to ensure safe drinking water.

PTI| Last Updated: Feb 27, 2015, 17:43 PM IST

New Delhi: With thousands of habitations being affected by water contamination, Health Minister JP Nadda on Friday said this was leading to complications and even death and stressed the need for intensive co-ordination with various entities to ensure safe drinking water.

"14,132 habitations are affected by contamination of fluoride and 1,991 habitations are affected by arsenic," Nadda said in Lok Sabha during Question Hour, citing information provided by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation.

Contaminated drinking water can cause various diseases such as cholera, typhoid and acute encephalitis syndrome.

Intake of fluoride and arsenic contaminated drinking water leads to various clinical complications and at times even cause death, the Minister said.

While in some cases contamination was due to natural causes, the rest of them were man-made, he said, adding that awareness programmes were being carried out on the effects of water contamination.

Nadda said "more intensive co-ordination is required" to tackle contamination of drinking water between the Ministries of Health and Drinking Water and Sanitation to ensure safe drinking water.

"We will see that more funds are given for safe drinking water," Nadda said and added that "provision of safe drinking water is the main strategy to control diseases caused by drinking of contaminated water. Rural water supply is a state subject."

The Centre supplements the states' efforts by providing technical and financial assistance under the centrally sponsored National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP).

To a query on water getting contaminated due to water and sewerage lines being nearby, Nadda said his Ministry would co-ordinate with the Urban Development Ministry to address the issue