THANE: Almost all the drinking water samples collected from Viviana Mall by Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) have revealed alarming levels of e-coli bacteria and abnormal acidic values. This resulted in stomach ailments and gastro problems for those visitors who drank water or ate at the restaurants at the mall last week.
The civic body has slapped a notice to the mall directing the management to clean all the storage water tanks. It will now conduct regular checks to ensure that water served to the public is potable.
The management of Viviana Mall said they have taken suggestions from the TMC and have already undertaken cleaning work of their tanks. A spokesperson said they were working towards strengthening their mechanism to ensure such incidents didn’t recur. “We are complying with the TMC notice over ensuring water quality. We will invite them to conduct checks and ascertain the quality of water on our premises,” said the spokesperson.
According to the TMC sampling report, exclusively accessed by TOI, the quality of water was found unfit for human consumption as per civic parameters. The pH value in one of the samples was found to be 4.5 as against the normal values of 6.5-8. If the numbers are below 6.5, it indicates the water has acidic content, often caused by excess chlorination, said a civic official.
The water checked at five eating outlets in the mall was found to have high levels of e-coli bacteria.
The e-coli content in the water was 16 while the permissible limit is 10. The water quality at these outlets was also hard and in the range of 125 while the permissible limit is between 50 and 75.
“Contamination levels in the samples collected indicated that the water must have been lifted from bore wells and distributed without treatment,” said an official from the pollution control board, suggesting the mall management took a casual approach regarding safety of visitors.
The TMC has advised the mall management to purchase water from civic-approved tankers to avoid another incident of contaminated water supply.
The civic body dashed off a notice to the mall following complaints of patrons falling sick after eating or drinking water at some of the outlets in the mall since last week. Several residents said they were down with stomach-related ailments after eating out at some restaurants at the mall.
Visitors who suffered from various ailments said the mall should have been more responsible and assured proper water quality.
“Our group of 14 residents from Hiranandani Estate dined at a restaurant in the mall following which 12 of us fell sick the next day. We have written to the food and drugs administration and are awaiting action on this front,” said Zankhana Desai, a resident.
NCP city president Najib Mulla said it was a serious matter and they would demand proper action. “The mall cannot play with the health of residents and serving potable water to customers is a basic thing. We will seek action,” said Mulla.