Water woes

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Article Source: https://tribune.com.pk/story/1349754/water-woes-2/

Among the innumerable lamentable social issues having to do with the lack of basic necessities in Pakistan is the non-availability of potable water. According to a new report by the Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR), 84 per cent of the country’s water supply sources that actually function are not suitable for consumption. Furthermore, only 72 per cent of water supply sources overall are operational and supply water. Simultaneously, the leadership constructs new motorways, introduces new CPEC projects and inaugurates new metropolitan bus services. One would think that being a country with a seaside port, water problems would be nonexistent in Pakistan but that is far from the truth, embarrassingly. One would also think that the government would first focus its energies and resources on ensuring that all citizens of the country have potable water.

This report comes against the backdrop of the country’s commercial banks posting windfall profit in excess of Rs475 billion over a three-year period, evidencing that funding could be available through bank financing or other sources. However, no substantive scheme has been introduced for securing this most basic of public needs. It does not beget our government that many aspects of public well-being are interlinked. When people are provided basic necessities, other debilitating factors will see an end; for example, access to clean water will consequently reduce the incidence of waterborne diseases. The PCRWR report is an eye-opener as it quantifies just how inefficient Pakistan’s water supply network is. Water is crucial for health and humans cannot survive without it. Ergo, water and sanitation agencies need to be mobilised towards correcting the weak water supply system and ensuring that it is safe for use.

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