Chandigarh, May 14 (UNI) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today called for a comprehensive strategy to provide safe drinking water in rural areas through proper monitoring of water supply schemes.
Mr Badal directed the officials concerned to chalk out ways and means to implement the schemes aimed at purifying water especially in the most polluted zones of the state with modern purification techniques such as Reverse Osmosis (RO), Silver Ionisation and Ultra Violet techniques depending on the quality of water.
In this context, he directed the State Chief Secretary to convene a meeting of officers from Punjab State Pollution Control Board, Punjab State Council for Science and Technology, departments of Water Supply and Sanitation and Health.
Mr Badal was presiding over a meeting of the expert committee on 'Audit of Drinking Water Quality and Rural Water Supply Schemes' here.
He also asked the Secretary Water Supply and Sanitation to identify the processes of purification of water block wise after carrying out an extensive survey of the quality of water in various villages.
Mr Badal assured the committee that there was no paucity of funds for the implementation of the recommendations given by the expert committee as the state government was committed to provide safe water to the people.
He also underscored the need to educate the people through organising state-wide mass awareness campaigns using rural health workers including Active Social Health Associates (ASHAs) about the ill-effects of contaminated water.
The expert committee also observed that the ill-effects were due to higher level of heavy metals and pesticides in drinking water and food.
The Chief Minister also held detailed deliberations with the team of experts from a water purification company, Ion Exchange India Ltd.
Mr Badal asked the company to undertake a study especially in the Malwa belt which had a high incidence of cancer to determine the nature of contamination in the water.
The company would also suggest suitable technology to improve the quality of water for drinking and irrigation purposes in this region.
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