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Minister offers CMs cooperation for provision of clean drinking water

By Mumtaz Alvi
November 02, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Science and Technology has offered to assist the provinces in provision of safe drinking water to their respective populations and assessment of water quality across Pakistan, as presently only 31 percent population has access to safe drinking water.

Sources in the ministry told The News Thursday that Minister for Science and Technology Senator Muhammad Azam Swati wrote a letter to the chief ministers of the four provinces and offered them cooperation in ‘effectively pooling and handling water resources’.

Swati explained to the chief ministers that PCRWR offered a diverse range of research, advisory and consultancy services, including water quality monitoring and treatment, ground water investigation, real time flow measurement, using echo-sounds based telemetry systems, GIS mapping, tile drainage, water conservation and capacity building programmes.

The minister contended that timely remedy to ensure provision safe drinking water to citizens was the need of the hour in the face of so many fatal diseases-related to drinking water. It is pertinent that a few months back, the Senate of Pakistan was informed that Pakistan is among the top countries, suffering from hepatitis and this is mainly due to polluted drinking water.

They said the minister, through the letter, informed the chief ministers that the national level monitoring investigations carried out by the ministry’s body: the Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources; had revealed that only 31 per cent population of the country had access to clean drinking water.

These investigations, he noted, had identified the prevalence of bacteriological contamination, arsenic, nitrate and fluoride and these contamination had adverse effects on the quality of life due to water-related ailments like cholera, diarrhea, typhoid, hepatitis A and E, kidney diseases, skeletal and crippling fluorosis.

“This alarming situation of drinking water quality entails monitoring, careful selection of drinking water treatment technologies is the need of the hour for provision of safe drinking water to citizens. PCRWR can support in assessing and understanding the water related challenges and advise on risks and mitigation measures,” they quoted the minister as telling the chief ministers.