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Water a key issue, but not for all voters: Poll

According to the HT-CSDS survey, 35% of Delhiites consider the drinking water situation as the most important civic issue in their locality.

india Updated: Oct 24, 2003 13:42 IST

Checkout for details
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Till now, the HT-CSDS Delhi Survey 2003 has looked at the big picture: which party is ahead in the election race, which of the two major chief ministerial candidates is more popular with the electorate, and what proportion of voters is actually aware that there’s an election just over five weeks away.

Over the next few days, we shall focus our reports on the civic issues that touch every Delhiite’s life on a daily basis. The way Delhi views these issues is likely to impact on the way it votes on December 1.

We begin this coverage with results of the Survey on what voters think of the drinking water situation over the past five years. According to the Survey, 35 per cent of Delhi’s voters consider this to be the most important civic issue in their locality.

So, has the water supply improved since 1998? Yes and no, with the ‘Yes’ sounding a little louder than the ‘No’. Forty-one per cent of voters say the drinking water situation has improved; 33 per cent say it has deteriorated over the past five years.

A quarter of the electorate thinks the situation has not changed at all since 1998. One in every 100 voters says he/she has no opinion on the matter.

A substantial proportion of voters who live in apartment blocks — either in DDA flats or group housing societies — and government accommodation feel the availability of water has improved. By contrast, a larger chunk of the people living in the slums, resettlement colonies and the villages feel the situation has become worse.

By and large, the satisfaction graph follows increasing levels of prosperity. Forty-two per cent of rich voters feel there is more water now than they had five years ago. Thirty-eight per cent of the poor feel the same.

More poor people than rich people think the situation has deteriorated. A quarter of the rich voters feels the situation has deteriorated, 38 per cent of the poor feel the same.


A majority of people living in the Kasturba Nagar, Saket and Seelampur assembly constituencies say they have more drinking water now than before. But a majority of the people living in the Najafgarh, Matia Mahal and Minto Road constituencies feel that the water supply situation has deteriorated.

The Survey also tracked the sources of drinking water for Delhiites. The results reveal that only 76 per cent of people in the nation’s capital have municipal tap water in their homes. Eight per cent have a shared connection; the rest have to depend on alternative sources like hand pumps, municipal water tankers or wells.

Among the voters who have municipal tap water connections in their homes, 43 per cent say the situation has improved. But up to 50 per cent of people who depend on other sources for drinking water feel the situation is worse now than five years ago.

First Published: Oct 24, 2003 01:28 IST