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Toxic water leaves Pavagada villagers ill

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BENGALURU: Villagers of Pavagada taluk in Tumkur district, who were suffering from dental and spinal problems after consuming fluoride contaminated water, demanded that the Government supply safe drinking water at a press conference on Friday.

“The Andhra Pradesh government has provided pure drinking water to many villages near the Pavagada taluk. The Karnataka government must also do the same and allot about Rs 400 crores for this project,” said Mr Japananda, President of Jalakkagi Janavedike, an organisation fighting for water rights in Pavagada, at the conference.

A water quality test conducted by the Rural Development and Panchayat Department (RDPR) n 2013 and 2014 showed that 1233 samples of ground water were affected by fluoride, 504 with iron contaminants and 323 samples had nitrate content in it, Jalakkagi Janavedike said in a press release.

Mahadura Gundaswamy, a member of ‘Jalakkagi Janavedike’ said, “Chemical contamination in existing ground water sources has made life miserable for us and as a result I am suffering from severe backache every day. There are other taluks such as Challakere and Molakalmuru in Chitradurga district which are also affected.”

The over exploitation of ground water together with inadequate rainfall has also made existing bore wells dry, the press release said.

Speaking to the Beacon, Mr Japananda said, “A public interest litigation (PIL) petition has been filed with High Court of Karnataka requesting the court to direct the Karnataka government to supply good quality drinking water to Pavagada taluk.”

Ashish Roy- I MS Comm

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