Alert sounded in Madhya Pradesh after girl killed over water


Bhopal: An alert has been sounded and police superintendents in Madhya Pradesh have been asked to be vigilant and deploy adequate force in sensitive areas during water supply timings after a girl was murdered in Indore following a dispute over filling of water, officials said Thursday.

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An 18-year-old girl in Indore, 200 kms from here, was stabbed to death Wednesday when she refused to let her neighbours draw water from a tap in her home.

“Hukam Gaud, in his early 20s, was so angered by Punam Yadav’s refusal that he stabbed her five times outside her home in Bakshibaug area”, a police official said.

The teenager was rushed to a government hospital where she was pronounced dead. The accused has been arrested. With the onset of summer, several areas in the state are plagued with acute drinking water crisis due to little or no rains for the third consecutive year.

Blood was spilled over water in several parts of the state last year also when, following drought-like situation in almost the whole state, most of the local bodies started supplying water once in two or three days. Even in the state capital, the residents started getting water supply only once in two days.

This system of water supply still continues as this year too the state is once again in the grip of acute water shortage, with some areas getting supply only once a week. Over 50 per cent of the districts received less than average rain this year.

There have been protests by people in areas where water supply has trickled down to once in three days or even a week. Officials estimate that nearly 70 percent of the state’s 65 million people are affected by the crisis. Bhopal, Indore, Ujjain, Gwalior, Jabalpur, Sagar, Ratlam, Shajapur, Datia, Neemuch, Sidhi and Khargone are some of the worst-hit districts.

The state government has already sanctioned Rs.89.81 lakh to 38 urban bodies in 11 districts for transporting drinking water.

“Last year, 160 of the 358 local bodies of the state could not supply drinking water regularly. This time the condition is even worse as 172 local bodies are not in a condition to make regular supply of water,” an urban administration official said.

In view of the prevailing situation and the murder of the teenaged girl in Indore, Madhya Pradesh Police have alerted superintendents of police of all the districts.

“A directive regarding deployment of police force along with the tankers supplying water in different localities is being issued,” Inspector General (Law and Order) A.K. Soni told IANS.

“The superintendents of police have also been asked to deploy police force in sensitive areas even during supply of water from public taps,” he added.