• Thursday, Jan 30, 2020
  • Last Update : 12:05 am

Something in the water

  • Published at 10:50 pm July 19th, 2019

The problems Dhaka’s water supply faces are beyond just contamination

The water supply has been a cause of woe for Bangladeshis for a long time, and things do not seem to be getting better. 

It is truly alarming to learn that, according to a recent study conducted by the Brac Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), 80% of water in rooftop and underground reservoirs of Dhaka are contaminated with coliform bacteria, offering further proof that the water served to most citizens of Dhaka is anything but safe to drink.

However, in contrast, only 20% of water samples from pump stations were seen to be contaminated, which shows that, while the water is safer at the source, it is getting contaminated in the distribution line due to illegal connections and uncoordinated development work, such as improper cleaning and maintenance of reservoirs, which is damaging the pipelines of Dhaka Wasa.

Suffice to say, this is unacceptable.

Unfortunately, the problems Dhaka’s water supply faces are beyond just contamination; with the water table diminishing at an alarming rate and with our rivers in a dire condition, we could be looking at a serious water crisis just around the corner unless we take immediate action.

While there has been talk of new plans and strategies that Wasa could undertake, including cleaning up our rivers, replacing older pipelines, and raising awareness on water pollution and wastage, these talks are futile, and will mean nothing if there is no action or implementation of these strategies in the end.

The citizens of Dhaka have a right to clean drinking water, and the authorities have a responsibility to ensure this, and it is clear that the authorities so far are failing at this basic task.