Impure water poses serious health risks | 2017-03-20 |

Impure water poses serious health risks

Staff Correspondent     20th March, 2017 12:55:03 printer

Impure water poses serious health risks

Many people across the country are being deprived of safe drinking water and they are at high risk of getting attacked with various serious ailments due to consumption of impure and dirty water.


Impure drinking water can cause diseases like hepatitis, diarrhoea, cholera, jaundice and cancer. Rise in population has resulted in the increase in consumption of water and shortage of pure water across the country.


Consumption of impure water is responsible for the recent rise in kidney disease, ulcer, high pressure, asthma and tuberculosis.


Prof Dr Abdul Matin of Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College & Hospital said, “Impure water causes hepatitis A and E, diarrhoea, cholera and jaundice.”


People can be attacked with such serious diseases by drinking impure water and eating foods made by using such water, he added.


He advised all to refrain from eating foods cooked using tap water without proper purification.


A report shows that demand for water in the capital Dhaka is 220-230 crore litres per day. The Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) is entrusted with supplying the water to city dwellers.


Many people blame WASA for supplying dirty and impure water, arguing that the water being supplied by WASA is untreatable and often stinks.


The WASA has to depend on the Saidabad Water Treatment Plant for 15 percent of its water supply. The plant collects water from highly polluted rivers like Shitalakhkhya and Buriganga and supplies the water after so-called treatment.


Pollution in these rivers is widespread due to the dumping of industrial, human and tannery effluents. The water of the rivers is so polluted that it goes through two purification processes. It is supplied to people only after secondary treatment. But all efforts go in vain as the water is not worthy of disinfecting.


Not only the city dwellers but also the people of other parts of the country are facing a shortage of pure water.


Inhabitants of all divisional cities, district towns and upazila headquarters have to rely on water supplied by WASA, city corporations and municipalities. The authorities supply underground and river water after treating it with bleaching power and other chemicals. Excessive use of chemicals in water can also cause various health hazards.


Prof Amir Hossain Khan, chief scientist of Plasma plus Application and Research Laboratory, said treatment of highly polluted water of the major rivers around Dhaka city goes beyond traditional approach.


He made the remarks while addressing a seminar on “Pollution Profile of Major Rivers around Dhaka” organised jointly by a private scientific research laboratory Plasma Plus and a non-government organisation Brotee at CIRDAP auditorium on December 5 last year.


“Water of the Buriganga is seriously polluted while the situation of five other rivers is also alarming,” he said, quoting the report.


Plasma Plus conducted a study on the pollution profile of the Buriganga, Turag, Balu, Shitalakkhya, Dhaleshwari and Bangshi rivers during a period from April to December last year with financing from the World Bank.


He opined that water of six major rivers surrounding Dhaka gets overly polluted, particularly in the dry season, and such water cannot be purified for drinking. He also said  no river water was found to be of “blue” category suitable for drinking after disinfection.


Amir Hossain said water of six rivers was contaminated with organic micropollutants  and non-degradable heavy metals, making it undrinkable.


The Sayedabad Water Treatment Plant is in trouble treating water of the Shitalakkhya being contaminated with excessive ammonia.


An article published in says iron allows red blood cells to deliver oxygen to all cells and tissues in human body. Iron is also a naturally occurring element in nature, meaning some of it exists in the drinking water. The amount of iron in regular tap water is so minor that the users don’t get sick.


In some cases, water does have too much iron causing abdominal and bowel problems of the people.


The report claims that a good water purifier can purify water and makes it 100 percent drinkable.


Many people across the country are at high risk of getting attacked with various serious dises due to consumption of impure and dirty water.