Debating India

Orissa water policy criticised

Monday 2 May 2005

Staff Reporter

BHUBANESWAR: More than 50 per cent of the people in Orissa do not have access to safe drinking water at present and the number could increase due to commissioning of industrial projects, mining and depletion of ground water level.

This was expressed by experts at a consultation on water issues here on Saturday.

Contamination of drinking water sources should be prevented at all cost, the speakers said.

They also criticised the Water Policy that the Orissa Government was formulating saying that the guidelines were not pro-people.

The draft policy, which was drawn on the lines of the Central Water Policy, 2003, aimed at pushing development projects, prevailing over the well being of the affected people.

The proposed water policy also visualised water as a commodity subjected to market forces and had a hidden agenda for privatisation, the speakers said.

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