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New initiative to curb contaminated water crisis in odisha

Jun 27, 2018

The new 3 months programme ‘Jalseva’ introduced by the Rise Against Hunger India and Ahinsa Club will be helpful in resolving the extreme water contamination problem in Odisha.

Bhubaneshwar: Water is one of the most essential elements for all living beings on earth and its absence has adverse effect on the overall environment well-being and the economic stability of the affected region.

Odisha, is facing one of the worst drought conditions ever seen over the past century, thereby leading to a severe drinking water crisis, crop failure and distress migration. Balangir, Kalahandi & Bargarh are the rural areas of odisha which are adversely effected by the constant occurrence of drought.

Villagers in these regions are facing extreme health hazards due to high levels of fluoride contamination found in the limited drinking water resources left with them, with no alternate source of water, the villagers are forced to drink from the existing fluoride contaminated sources.

The water quality test was conducted by the Department of Water Resources & Sanitation has revealed that the fluoride content in water is far more than what is acceptable according to recommendations of the World Health Organization(WHO).

A proficient initiative has been taken by Rise Against Hunger India (RAHI), an international NGO, in collaboration with the NGO named Ahinsa Club to reach out to the people of Odisha and to provide them with the temporary relief from issue of the contaminated water and hunger.

The team introduced the Project ‘Jalseva’ a 3 month programme to fulfill the basic needs of the villagers and provide them solutions to overcome the issues of water scarcity, fluoride contamination and water treatment.

The motive of this project is to ensure access to safe and potable drinking water for 4,517 families from 20 villages in 3 blocks of Balangir and Bargarh districts during the peak summer months i.e. April to July 2018.

They have deployed water counters at critical road points to enable the community around the villages to get clean drinking water. The counters are monitored by a water committee set-up within the project, to ensure the proper maintenance, testing & treatment of water and proper utilization of the available water resources.

Volunteers are appointed from every village and are given special training on the treatment techniques, water storage, tube-well repairing and understanding the importance of basic health and sanitation. The low-cost water filters are distributed to all households affected by Fluoride contaminated water.

The team will also work on creating a water reservoir called the ‘Chahala’, for the long run sustainable solution which will provide clean, fluoride-free drinking water to the villagers as well as the cattle.

Dola Mohapatra, Executive Director, Rise Against Hunger India said thatThe mission of this organization is to remove hunger from the country by 2030. The organization firmly believes to accomplish its three pillars of issues from the nation i.e. food insecurity along with water issues and medical facilities in drought-prone areas, improving and build farm yields of local farmers and providing emergency response in the disaster prone areas”.

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