Chandigarh : All villages in certain districts of Punjab that are affected by salinity in water will have reverse osmosis (RO) plants within 21 months to provide clean water to villagers, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said Thursday.
The districts of Ferozepur, Bathinda, Faridkot, Mansa and Muktsar in south-west Punjab are known as the cancer belt of the state. Much of this is attributed to contaminated water.
Sukhbir Singh Badal Thursday directed water supply and sanitation department officials to examine the quality of water in these areas and find if there was any linkage of the rising incidence of cancer with the quality of ground water in this region.
Badal said that technology should be used to ensure clean, potable water to residents of the “difficult” villages.
The World Bank had sanctioned a Rs.12.8 billion (Rs.1,280 crore) project in 2007 for providing safe water to all 12,000 villages in Punjab.
The RO water supply system had already been installed in 337 villages of the state at a cost of nearly Rs.350 million.