Madurai Gets Drinking Water Laced with Sewage

Posted in: Drinking Water News, Global Water News, Water Contamination
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Article courtesy of  | June 9, 2014 | The Times of India | Shared as educational material

MADURAI: It seems the drinking water woes of Madurai residents will never end come rain or shine. Worsening their misery due to restricted water supply, sewage water is seeping into the domestic lines. Residents blamed the city corporation for not clearing the sewage drains properly. They held a couple of protests urging the corporation to address the issue. Meanwhile, civic officials said corrosion of water pipes installed by residents is a major reason. Sewage is seeping through broken pipelines into main supply lines, officials said.

On Thursday, residents of Villapuram attempted to picket the road complaining that they are getting contaminated water through their pipelines. C Shanthi, a resident, said quality of drinking water is a major worry. “From alternate days of supply, now drinking water is provided once in four days. If that water too is contaminated with sewage, how can we manage?” She asked.

M Chellam, CPM councilor from Villapuram, said the civic body is aware about the issue. “The sewage drains in the city are getting clogged. There are few equipment-mounted vehicles to attend the problem. There is only one suction truck and two autorickshaw-mounted equipments for each zone. This is not adequate to resolve severe clogging of sewage in the city. Seepage of clogged sewage leads to contamination. If the sewage channels are cleared this contamination could be avoided,” she pointed out.

Chellam listed Anupanadi, Jeevanagar, Jaihindpuram, Pykkara and Arapalayam as vulnerable areas for contamination. A protest was also held at Anupanadi on Saturday, she said.

Corporation sources from the drinking water division, however, said the problem occurs in individual household connections as the pipelines laid by them while constructing houses would have corroded over a period. Most of the drinking water pipelines crisscross the underground drainage system. Sewage water seeps through the corroded pipelines.

Drinking water pipelines remain empty since drinking water is supplied once in four days. This enables entry of sewage water into domestic lines. Subsequently, the entire supply pipelines get contaminated,” explained an engineer. People should periodically check their pipelines for corrosion to avoid the problem because it is difficult to find out the source of contamination once it happens, he further said.

Corporation commissioner C Kathiravan said the civic body has started work to address the issue. “Our personnel will rectify the issue. The work will be carried out in the coming days too. We urge residents to periodically check the drinking water pipelines for corrosion as well,” he said.

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