Dhaka WASA blamed for low quality water

Protesters offer sherbet made of supplied water to MD

Staff Correspondent | Published: 18:50, Apr 23,2019 | Updated: 02:11, Apr 24,2019

 
 

Residents from different areas of Dhaka turn up at WASA building at Karwan Bazar on Tuesday in protest against the supply of low quality water by the public agency in the areas. — New Age photo

Residents from Jurain, Shympur, Madhya Badda, Rampura and Tejgaon areas of the capital on Tuesday went on agitation in front of Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority office demanding supply of pure water instead of low quality and stinking water.
The protesters demonstrated with ‘sherbet’ made of WASA-supplied water in jags for the managing director Taqsem A Khan, but the officer was not in his office during the protest for three hours.
They demanded removal of the WASA managing director and asked for apology from him for his recent comment that ‘water supplied by WASA was 100 per cent safe.’
Addressing the demonstration, Mizanur Rahaman, a resident of Jurain area, said that Dhaka WASA managing director lied by claiming that the supplied water was pure.
He also said that they submitted a written complaint in 2012 with mass-signature of more than 3,500 residents regarding polluted water. But the authority took no interest in that regard, the protester said.
Another protester Rasel Ahmed from Shympur area alleged that they had been using the supply water only for washing clothes, taking baths and other household purposes.
‘We are buying water from a nearby mosque at Tk 2 per 10 litre for drinking,’ he added.
Monirul Islam from East Rampura said that the city dwellers had rejected the MD’s statement and were demanding his resignation.
As Dhaka WASA managing director Taqsem A Khan was not available at his office as the agitators turned up in front of the office.
Later a four-member delegation of the protesters talked to WASA technical director AKM Shahid Uddin, who assured them of repairing the faulty water supply lines in the affected areas and ensure drinkable water there.
The director said that water sometimes got polluted in the pipelines before reaching consumers.
He also said dirty water tanks of the residents could cause water pollution.
Asked for comment, Taqsem A Khan told New Age that the protests got no support from the city dwellers. He even expressed doubt whether the protesters brought WASA supplied water.
On April 17, Transparency International Bangladesh in a research report revealed that 93 per cent consumers purified water supplied by the Dhaka WASA in different way for drinking.
It also said that at least 91 per cent of DWASA’s consumers in the capital boiled piped water to make it drinkable while an implication of burning natural gas amounting 365,7,37,008 cubic metre, which costs approximately Tk 332.37 crore every year.
Responding to the report of TIB, the WASA managing director at a press conference on April 20 said that WASA water is completely safe.
He also said that the TIB’s research methodology was not scientific.

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