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Water Scarcity in Assembly

IFP Editorial: The Opposition needs to bring the problem of water scarcity and other associated issues to the government’s attention.

ByIFP Bureau

Updated 3 Aug 2022, 6:52 pm

(PHOTO: IFP)
(PHOTO: IFP)

In many places in and around Imphal city, the Public Health Engineering Department (PHED) has started installing pre-paid metres for tap water and the general people cooperated with the department in the hope that the potable tap water supply would also become regular like electricity. Tragedy is, most areas in Imphal are still not getting tap water as the new pipeline from Iroisemba is yet to become operational. They said, the new pipeline would be ready by August. But then, the officials had been promising for months now and Imphal city is still in the grip of acute water scarcity.

 

We shall not digress on the tall claims of the government. But, we must say pipes need water for it to reach homes. Again, the main problem is when water comes in the pipes, the push is not enough for the water to reach the water tanks installed at homes without a pump.

ALSO READ: Pumps and tap water

Practically, many families with a tap water connection had to have a water pump without which the water comes in trickling. As the poor cannot simply afford a water pump, they live at the mercy of rich neighbours who own water pumps.

Again, it is mostly families near the main water pipeline who get most of the water while many in the interior Leikai areas do not get water even if they use water pumps to suck water from the internal pipes. And we cannot simply understand why PHED is allowing or rather encouraging families to buy and use water pumps in the first place while they should be banning it.

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In a move to save energy, the government had been appealing to the general population to avoid using electrical appliances, including water pumps. As water has stopped flowing in the pipes, people are buying water from private water tankers at exorbitant rates.

Major portions of Imphal city have been facing water scarcity and have had to depend on private water tankers. In fact, private water supply has become a booming business. Some enterprising people had started operating private water treatment plants near the Imphal River, even in the Chief Minister’s own constituency. For those who could afford to buy 10,000 litre at Rs 7,000 and 1,700 litres at Rs 500, it is alright. But to the poor urban families, it has become a major burden with the MLAs turning a blind eye to the woes of the poor who cannot afford to buy water.

ALSO READ: The urgent call for river rejuvenation

The VVIPs and VIPs, to whose homes and quarters water is delivered by government water tankers on a regular basis, might have been blind to the acute water scarcity facing Imphal city now. While Imphal city reels under water scarcity the state PHED is doing precious little to come up with adequate measures for availing drinking water to the general populace.

We still do not know, when the Water Treatment Plant at Chingkhei Ching would become operational. On the other hand, one cannot simply depend on the Iroisemba Water Supply scheme. Now, we are more concerned about the acute scarcity of water facing the state. We hope Minister Sushindro would apply his mind to this important issue.

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With springs and rivers drying up, catchment areas lying in waste and wetlands vanishing, the future is very bleak for the state.

ALSO READ: Water scarcity in Imphal

Manipur experiences water scarcity due to lack of facilities to harvest rainwater and destruction of catchment areas, as per reports. Manipur has been receiving an annual rainfall of 1,467.5 mm, which is higher than the national average. There are also reports showing that 42 per cent of the natural springs in the hill areas of the state have vanished.

The state needs to frame a comprehensive Water policy to deal with non-stop supply of potable water to every home both in urban and rural areas throughout the year with special emphasis on adequate supply during the lean season.

As the state assembly session is going on, the Opposition needs to bring the problem of water scarcity and other associated issues to the government’s attention.  

EDITORIAL

 
 
 
 

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First published:

Tags:

water supplydrinking waterjal jeevan missionwater scarcitytap water connectionshar ghar jalcatch the rainpotable drinking water‘Jal Shakti Abhiyan

IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur

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