Delhi water doesn’t conform to ISO standards

Samples were drawn from various locations across Delhi and 20 other cities.

Samples were drawn from various locations across Delhi and 20 other cities.  

BIS files report in Supreme Court after 11 samples were tested.

None of the drinking water samples randomly collected from across Delhi conforms to the ISO standards of purity in one or more requirements, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) informed the Supreme Court on Friday.

Of a total of 11 domestic piped drinking water samples, one is from the residence of Union Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Pawan. The sample taken from his 12, Janpath residence failed on the parameters of odour and aluminium and coliform contamination. The BIS functions under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs.

“It was found that all the drinking water samples drawn from Delhi were non-conforming in one or more requirements as per IS 10500:2012 [specification for drinking water],” concluded a 64-page report filed by the Department of Laboratory Policy and Planning Department of the BIS, represented by advocates Vipin Nair, Karthik Jayshankar and Anshuman Bahadur.

The samples were sent for testing at the laboratories accredited to the National Accreditation Board. The test reports are on record in the court.

On January 13, the court ordered the pollution control board and the BIS to conduct a random check of water quality in Delhi and submit a report in a month. The BIS report said it drew samples from various locations across Delhi and 20 other State capitals under an integrated scheme.

On Friday, a Bench of Justices Arun Mishra and Deepak Gupta deputed another joint inspection by the Central Pollution Control Board, the BIS and Delhi Jal Board. The Delhi government has maintained that potable water in the national capital is safe. The re-inspection has been ordered for further clarity.

The court, however, asked the BIS to suggest measures to improve water purity and asked it for reports on the samples taken from the other cities. The court said one of the main reasons for contamination in Delhi was leaking pipes.

In its report, ‘Report of Testing of Piped Drinking Water Samples Drawn from Delhi’, filed on February 19 in the court, the BIS said it had focused on water supplied by city municipalities, corporations, water boards, local bodies. It said the samples were sent for testing against 47 out of 48 parameters (excluding radiological test). “These covered organoleptic and physical test, chemical test, toxic substance, bacteriological, virological and biological test,” the report said.

“Coliform contamination occurs when faecal matter gets mixed with treated water supplied to consumers... Ultimately, consumers face dangerous gastrointestinal diseases, like dysentery, as a result of this contamination,” Mr. Nair argued.

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Printable version | Mar 30, 2020 4:01:46 AM |

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