The workshop aimed at possible replication and acceptability of KAF as a viable, low cost appropriate arsenic mitigation measure in the arsenic contaminated regions of the country.The concentration of arsenic in groundwater exceeds the permissible level (50 mg/l based on water consumption of 2 litre per day, WHO) in parts of Assam (20 districts out of 24 districts tested) Tripura (3 districts out of 4 districts), Arunachal Pradesh (6 districts out of 13 districts), Nagaland (2 districts out of 8 districts) and Manipur (1 district out of 9 districts). The IGSSS is already doing a project in Assam (North Lakhimpur) to reduce the arsenic content and to monitor the potable quality of water.
To address the arsenic and iron contamination, IGSSS has taken initiatives such as advocating and provision of technical support of low cost affordable household level arsenic filter “Kanchan TM Arsenic Filter (KAF)” and community capacity building on Water Quality Monitoring and Management through a field unit at Lakhimpur, Assam.
IGSSS currently has a full team equipped with the water quality technology based at its field unit at Lakhimpur, Assam. With the timely support of Welthungerhilfe (WHH) the follow up of ECHO Flood Rehabilitation project in Assam, IGSSS is promoting and demonstration KAF and Bio-sand filter in 60 villages of Lakhimpur and Dhemaji district of Assam.This technology has been appreciated by targeted users, local administration, Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED) and also by NGOs and INGOs such as Catholic Relief Services/NE Office, DanChurchAid South Asia office, Oxfam India etc.
The workshop was attended by technical experts and officials from WaterAid, ECHO, Catholic Relief Services (CRS), DanChurchAid (DCA), Welthungerhilfe, Development Alternative (DA), Department of Drinking Water & Sanitation, Indo-Global Social Service Society (IGSSS), AFPRO, Caritas India, representative from German Embassy, Megh Pyne Abhiyan etc.
The workshop included the following sessions:
- Session 1: Included a welcome address and introduction to the background of the workshop by Dr. Joseph Sebastian, Executive Director, IGSSS, New Delhi
- Presentation 1: Pilot project of IGSSS-WHH by Mangneo Lhungdim, IGSSS
- Presentation 2: KanchanTM Arsenic Filter (KAF)-Research and Promotion in Nepal by Bipin, ENPHO
- Presentation 3: Arsenic Mitigation in Assam by AB Paul
The presentations were followed by a technical discussion and response from technical experts.
The details of the workshop and the note by IGSSS on the arsenic mitigation intiative undertaken in Assam can be downloaded from below: