GOVERNMENT OF INDIA,MINISTRY OF DRINKING WATER AND SANITATION
RAJYA SABHA,QUESTION NO.3527,ANSWERED ON:03.04.2017
Arsenic and toxic chemicals contamination of drinking water in Bihar
Shri Ram Nath Thakur
Will the Minister of DRINKING WATER AND SANITATION be pleased to state :-
(a) whether Government is aware of the fact that the underground water in a large area of Bihar is not fit for drinking as arsenic and other toxic chemicals have been found in it during investigation;
(b) if so, the assistance being extended by the Central Government to State Government for providing safe drinking water; and
(c) whether Government would consider conducting study on groundwater for districts/cities situated near river Ganga and to remove toxic chemicals present in the water for making it safe for drinking?
MINISTER OF STATE FOR MINISTRY OF DRINKING WATER AND SANITATION
(SHRI RAMESH CHANDAPPA JIGAJINAGI)
(a) Number of habitations affected by chemical contamination in ground drinking water sources in Bihar as reported by the State into Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) of the Ministry as on 30th March, 2017 is at Annexure.
(b) During 2016-17, under National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) Government of India has released an amount of Rs. 291.33 Crore to Government of Bihar. State can utilize upto 67% of NRDWP funds released to them for provision of safe drinking water in water quality affected habitations with priority to arsenic and fluoride affected habitations. In addition to this, Government of Bihar has been provided an amount of Rs. 82.48 Crore under Rural Water Supply & Sanitation projects –Low Income States (RWSSP-LIS).
Government of Bihar has been asked to focus on providing piped water supply schemes from safe and perennial surface water source in water quality affected habitations. As immediate measures, State has been provided an amount of Rs. 22.83 Crore in Mar 2016 as 100% grant by Government of India on the recommendation of NITI Aayog to provide 8-10 litres per capita per day of safe drinking water in arsenic and fluoride affected habitations for drinking and cooking purposes, as short term measures through Community Water Purification Plants.
The Ministry has formulated a National Water Quality Sub-Mission for focussed funding ring fenced only to arsenic and fluoride rural population on 50 : 50 cost sharing basis between centre and state and 90:10 for North-Eastern & Himalayan States preferably through surface water based piped water supply schemes. Under this program, during 2016-17, Rs. 20.97 Crore has been released to complete 48 ongoing schemes.
(c) The districts / cities situated along Ganga river ganges are likely to be prone for presence of arsenic. Therefore, regular drinking water quality testing in all districts & sub-divisional laboratories are made so that the extent of arsenic contamination can be arrived yet.