On my recent visit to some filter plants of city Rawalpindi in order to conduct survey regarding water quality of filtered water provided by WASA to citizens I was acquainted by this term being choiceless
The water distribution in very large cities of the country is always been a serious problem and previous and current government are constantly trying to improve the water quality in Rawalpindi and other cities. These steps include replacement of old pipe lines and water purification plants. The water quality is improved or not is still a question.
The filter plants in Rawalpindi were installed by WASA and TMA (tehsil management authority) to ensure the provision of drinkable water to all citizens. Now the WASA is responsible for the continuous monitoring, operation and maintenance of the water supply. There are countless occasions where WASA officials are found criticizing quality of water provided by TMA and use of inexact material for water filtration especially pipelines.
But in reality that’s the pot calling the cattle black. The overall condition of filter plants installed by WASA is not proficient either, running tabs, garbage heaps at the site and the lack of maintenance of the filter plants always stays a subject of criticism.
In 2009 Water and Sanitation Authority (WASA) and the City District Government had decided to alter all the water filtration plants after receiving complaints of dirty and contaminated water in supply lines from citizens. However improvements are hard to find, one of the reasons may be the non vigilant attitude of users like leaving tabs open and unattended, using purified water for washing purposes and stealing of tabs.
Another reason is lack of perception, Lack of awareness, illiteracy and unfavorable socio-economic conditions that make the end users, ever more vulnerable to the adverse effects of any type of contaminated water. During the survey most of the respondents affirmed that they are not satisfied by the hygienic and water quality of these filtration plants. When they were asked if they have ever reported any complain to WASA unexpectedly all of them replied with a negation. The unconcerned attitude of the consumers about the hideous condition of filter plants was appalling.
The extensive use of water from filter plant disregarding consequences is explainable because pipeline's water is considered unsafe and not all people can afford mineral water so there is no choice for the users. One of the respondents elucidated the reason that the authorities are not going to address our complains anyway so there no point in complaining. Statistics verify it that the Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) has failed to meet its revenue target of the year 2013-2014 and is currently facing huge budgetary deficit facing Rs 289 million revenue shortfall. Halting of monitoring and maintenance of filtration units can therefore be expected.
However being choiceless will not solve the issue; it will actually aggravate the situation. There is a dire need to educate the community about their rights. Strengthening people’s internal motivation should be considered.