KARNATAKA

Row over water contamination in city hotting up

Staff Correspondent

Corporation misleading the public by providing false information, says MGP

MGP releases documents obtained from PCB Sewage from Hebbal seeps into Devaraya canal, it says

MYSORE: Reiterating its allegation that drinking water supplied to the central parts of Mysore is contaminated, the Mysore Grahakara Parishat (MGP) and the Dr. Ajay Memorial Drinking Water Foundation have accused the Mysore City Corporation (MCC) of misleading the public by providing false information on the purity of water.

At a joint press conference here on Saturday, MGP convener Bhamy V. Shenoy and president of the foundation A. Ramalingam released documents obtained from the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board's (KSPCB) regional office to substantiate its charge that sewage from Hebbal was seeping into Devaraya canal from where water was being drawn and pumped to the city.

Evidence

The MGP and the foundation also released photographic evidence provided by KSPCB to show that sandbags placed recently in Devaraya canal to divert the polluted water into the surrounding paddy fields were insufficient, and a considerable amount of sewage water was seeping through the barrier of sandbags.

The MCC's claim that water was being provided to the city from the Varuna canal has also been questioned by the KSPCB.

Diversion of water

"An attempt has been made to divert Varuna waters into the Devaraya canal through an irrigation channel. Since farmers on the way are using most of this water to irrigate their fields, not enough water is reaching Devaraya canal," KSPCB has said.

KSPCB's revelations assume significance in the wake of the MCC's denial of the water contamination charge made by the MGP and the foundation.

The MGP and the foundation reiterated that water drawn from the Devaraya canal and pumped to Vani Vilas Water Works through the Belagola pumping station was contaminated and unfit for consumption.

According to purification tests conducted recently, tap water supplied from Vani Vilas Water Works was not potable, they said. "Tap water samples collected from Yadavgiri, V.V. Mohalla and Brindavan extension and tested at ISO certified laboratories in the city have shown those collected from Yadavgiri and V.V. Mohalla contain bacteria. The samples collected from Brindavan extension are found to be safe for drinking," Dr. Shenoy said.

"The carelessness displayed by the MCC can prove to be fatal to the public," Dr. Shenoy said.

`Purify water'

He advised people in factories, villages and settlements that received raw water from the Devaraya canal to purify it by boiling or using filters.

"Citizens of Mysore who receive water from Vanil Vilas Water Works are also advised the same," Dr. Shenoy said.

Dr. Shenoy said it was unfortunate that convener of the Association of Concerned and Informed Citizens of Mysore Lakshmana, who had accompanied MCC Commissioner Chandrashekar during the latter's visit to the Devaraya canal recently, did not warn the people that water drawn from the source was contaminated.