'City's public taps fast vanishing'

'City's public taps fast vanishing'

Taps, meant for dispensing potable water in public places, are fast vanishing.
According to the latest report by People’s Campaign for Clean Water, less than 10 out of 100 people have access to public taps dispensing potable water.

Briefing reporters, Chief Researcher Shivaprasanna said the situation in Bangalore is the worst among seven districts studied.

“The team visited 71 public places in the City with an aggregate average footfall of 1.04 crore per day. The optimum number of taps required calculated on 1:100 ratio stands at 10,346, but there are merely 658 taps available, making 15,858 Bangaloreans depend on a single tap,” he said.

The study revealed very poor accessibility ratio with a meagre 0.63 per cent of people having access to taps dispensing potable water in the City.

Even in districts it was the same story with accessibility ratios in Gulbarga and Mysore at 8.8 per cent each, Mangalore at 9.1 per cent, Belgaum at 13 per cent, Dharwad at 16 per cent, and Tumkur 17.93 per cent, Shivaprasanna said.

The team also collected five water samples from each district to test for contamination, based on standards set by the government.

Almost 30 per cent of the samples were found to be contaminated and non-consumable. Gulbarga was the worst with over 80 of the samples found contaminated.

The researchers also found that bottled drinking water has become a highly profitable venture for retailers and private packagers.

The researchers cited lack of taps and paranoia of water contamination for the thriving business. Alleging a nexus between private players and public authorities, Shivaprasanna said, “Public authorities want private players to profit from sale of bottled water.

“Sometimes even if public taps are provided authorities are either pressured or bribed into making the taps inaccessible by damaging it. This creates an automatic demand for bottled water,” he added.

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