India’s ‘worst water crisis in history’ leaves millions thirsty
NEW DELHI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Weak infrastructure and a national shortage have made water costly all over India, but Sushila Devi paid a higher price than most.
It is alright for bathing and washing the dishes.” Water pollution is a major challenge, the report said, with nearly 70 percent of India’s water contaminated, impacting three in four Indians and contributing to 20 percent of the country’s disease burden.
“Our surface water is contaminated, our groundwater is contaminated.
See, everywhere water is being contaminated because we are not managing our solid waste properly,” said the report’s author Avinash Mishra.
You fall ill because you don’t have access to safe drinking water, because your water is contaminated.” “The burden of not having access to safe drinking water, that burden is greatest on the poor and the price is paid by them.”
Crippling water problems could shave 6 percent off India’s gross domestic product, according to the report by the government think-tank, Niti Aayog.
To tackle this crisis, which is predicted to get worse, the government has urged states – responsible for supplying clean water to residents – to prioritise treating waste water to bridge the supply and demand gap and to save lives.
Currently, only 70 percent of India’s states treat less than half of their wastewater.
The Yamuna river that flows through New Delhi can be seen covered under a thick, detergent-like foam on some days.
That does not stop 10-year-old Gauri, who lives in a nearby slum, from jumping in every day.