One of the hallmarks of development is the quality of water that comes out of a tap
It is good to see Bangladesh and Japan sign an agreement that will help us take a step closer to safe drinking water for all.
Right now, there are serious safety concerns all around, with shallow groundwater being used as the main drinking water source. Many wells, unfortunately, contain arsenic that overshoots the limit.
While arsenic is the overarching problem, there are many others which simply cannot be ignored -- one of the saddest aspects of daily life in our capital is that water coming out of water taps is never fit for drinking until it is boiled or purified in some form.
The E-coli bacteria is present in some 80% of private piped water taps, and even deep underground water often contains a large number of pollutants.
Our water supply, then, is nothing if not a health risk for our population.
Recently, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated two water treatment plants, one in Chittagong and one in Khulna. This is the right kind of initiative, and we need more of them.
One of the hallmarks of development, indeed, is the quality of water that comes out of a tap. The countries of Western Europe, Australia, and highly developed Asian countries such as Japan, South Korea, and Singapore have hit the mark. Residents in those countries can rest easy knowing the water they consume will not be making them ill.
Clean, safe, and easily accessible drinking water should not be too much to ask for. While we will not turn into Japan or Singapore overnight, treating this issue as a priority today sets us on the right course for the future.