Rajasthan's drinking water most contaminated

News this week: Rajasthan's drinking water most contaminated, artificial oxygen to clean Ulsoor lake and 20% government schools in Delhi don't have water connection.
Right to safe drinking water (Source: Merck Group) Right to safe drinking water (Source: Merck Group)

Rajasthan's drinking water most contaminated

1.09 crore people or more than 25,000 rural habitations in Rajasthan drink biologically or chemically contaminated water, says a report of the Ministry of Water Resources. Assam and Bihar are next in line with 12,879 and 10, 587 rural habitations affected by drinking water contamination. More than 84,000 rural habitations in the country only have access to water contaminated with chemicals like fluoride and nitrate. Increasing urbanisation results in generation of wastewater, a major reason for contamination. Three-fourth of the surface water resources in India are polluted due to untreated wastewater.

Artifical oxygen to save Ulsoor lake in Bangalore

A new technique, 'aeration and bioremediation' will soon be used to revive Ulsoor lake that is filled with sewage and affluents. A private company has proposed to the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board and the Municipal Corporation to introduce artificial oxygen into the lake through tubes under a Rs. 9.31 crore plan. This supply will oxidise organic and inorganic matter in the lake while also increasing the dissolved oxygen content of the water body. Once the oxygen level goes up, native fish species will be reintroduced in the lake to keep it clean of dead material and algae. All the native fish species in the lake went extinct by 2003 due to pollution.

20% of the government schools in Delhi don't have a water connection

A study of 131 government schools in Delhi reveals that 20% schools do not have a valid water connection. The study, conducted by the NGOs Child Relief and You and Alliance for People's Rights shows that 44% schools in north-west Delhi didn't have a Delhi Jal Board connection. None of the sample schools in west Delhi had water available near toilets and in both east and west Delhi, none of the sample schools had hand washing facilities near toilets.

Invasive fish species affect native fish diversity in Vidharbha

Invasive species like Tilepia and African Magur have led to a decline of native species in Vidharbha's Bembla river, leading to financial loss for the local fishermen. Fish seeds introduced by private contractors are contaminated with these two species that are banned in India except for breeding in cages and ponds not prone to flooding. Fishermen blame irrigation projects in the region for non-migration of native species in the river that had about 30 local species three years ago. Tilepia also feeds on prawns that constituted a good part of the Vidharbha's fishermen's catch.

375 lakes go extinct in 30 years in Hyderabad

A survey by the National Geophysical Research Institute has revealed that 375 lakes in the city have gone extinct as the city developed. The study titled 'Mapping of Urban Lakes in Hyderabad Urban Development Authority area' is based on remote sensing data and reveals that 268 lakes vanished between 2002 and 2012. Only 531 lakes are left now as compared to 906 in 1982. The study states that disappearance of lakes is affecting local temperatures and groundwater levels.

This is a weekly roundup of important news from September 30- October 6. Also read last week's policy matters updates.

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