Around 5,000 people living in nearly 1,000 houses of the Chandigarh Housing Board enclave in Sector 51 are facing a threat of epidemic, as a tubewell supplying water to them is functioning without a chlorinator.
To purify water, the public health department of the municipal corporation is putting bleaching power into the water tank without any measurement, which can cause serious health problems.
The department has also failed to provide residents with canal water from water works in Sector 52, for the last three years as they are waiting for permission for cut the road to lay water pipes.
Though two tubewells were installed in the area nearly seven years back, one has not got power connection for the past several years. Now, residents are dependent on one tubewell, which is not supplying potable water.
Speaking to HT, area sub-divisional engineer Gulshan Kumar said, "We are waiting for permission to make road cut to lay the line for supply of canal water and have deposited money regarding the same. Only one tubewell is functioning and we have to get power connection for the other, for which we had applied last year." The SDE refused to comment on using bleaching powder to purify water without any measurement.
Both the tubewells were installed seven years back at the cost of Rs 40 lakh, but the MC has failed to get power connection for one tubewell so far.
A chlorinator was installed in 2008, but owing to poor upkeep of the apparatus it became defunct and the MC was forced to resort to old practice of purifying water with bleaching powder, that too without proper measurement.
SS Bhardwaj, president, Citizens Welfare Society, Sector 51, Chandigarh, said, "We have written to authorities concerned several times regarding the supply of potable water, but no one paid any heed to our request. It seems that they are waiting for a major epidemic in the area. It is unfortunate that despite getting the permission to cut road one month back, the department is not laying water pipes. Residents are forced to drink muddy water, which is being supplied by from one tubewell."
Maintaining that it was indeed a serious issue, area councillor Harphool Chand Kalyan said, "How officials can play with the lives of residents? I will take up the issue with authorities concerned and hope it will be sorted soon."