Water quality row: DJB says over 98% samples collected during special drive found fit to drink

New Delhi, Dec 4 (PTI) The Delhi Jal Board on Wednesday said it collected over 4,200 water samples for testing in the last 10 days from across the national capital and more than 98 percent of them were found fit for drinking.

According to the World Health Organisation, one sample is collected per 10,000 people.

'We collected 4,204 water samples, five from each ward, from the entire city in the last 10 days. Of them, 4,128 or 98.19 percent were found satisfactory. This is well above the WHO requirement of 96 percent,' DJB vice chairman Dinesh Mohaniya said at a press conference.

'Names, phone numbers, and addresses of house owners were recorded to ensure transparency. The sealed samples were tested in three laboratories of the DJB on 29 parameters,' he said.

The Centre and the city government have been trading allegations since Union Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan released a Bureau of India Standards report on November 16 that said water samples collected from 11 places in the city failed quality tests on 19 parameters.

Mohaniya claimed that the BIS report was 'meant to create chaos ahead of the elections in the city and to serve the commercial interests of the RO manufacturers'.

Replying to a question on the joint inspection of water samples, the DJB vice chairman said, 'How can we trust BIS... It doesn't have its own labs, and conducts the test in the labs of RO manufacturers. How can we expect a fair deal? For RO manufacturers, it is essential to prove that Delhi's water is not potable, so that they can sell more RO purifiers in Delhi.' He had earlier said the Water Quality India Association (WQIA), a body of RO companies, had approached the Supreme Court against the May 2019 order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) that banned the use of reverse osmosis systems where drinking water supply had total dissolved solids (TDS) less than 500 mg per litre.

'The WQIA presented this BIS report before the apex court. It is a very strange coincidence,' he had said. PTI GVS AQS