According to the Indian report, in urban India, 50 million people in 15 cities have no access to safe, affordable drinking water. The report highlights that the majority of the population residing in private households wherein privately owned and operated sources of drinking water, such as wells, cisterns, and springs are available. But people hardly know how the water they consume reaches them. How it is contaminated during the treatment and supply stages.
Speaking on the essence of knowing healthy water, Manjari Chandra, Consultant Nutritional Medicine, said, “Amid the scarcity of water, it is very important to know about the purity of water available for consumption. It is often seen that people usually check if the water is clear while drinking. If it looks clean, they assume that it is safe to drink. But this is often not the case. Water looking clean might not always be safe for drinking.”
Adding further, Chandra said, “Healthy drinking water is very important for good health. But unhealthy water that the majority of urban Indians drink to survive due to the lack of knowledge about healthy water is equally detrimental to health. Therefore, it is quintessential for everyone especially who are living in urban India to know whether the water they consume is healthy or not because the sources, where it comes from and the way it is treated, determine its purity and safety for consumption.”
Dr Prof. Sanjay Rai, Professor, Dept. of Community Medicine, AIIMS, President, IPHA, said, “The density of population in urban India is quite high and so is the scarcity of safe drinking water. Therefore, the majority of the population consume water from privately owned water sources. In such a situation, knowing the way drinking water reaches them turns very important considering its safety and purity. Usually, due to the hectic schedule, people living in urban India don’t notice the discrepancy in the water pipelines of their own houses, which more often causes water contamination. So, it is obligatory for an individual to have a close eye on its maintenance. There are other sources of contamination that people usually don’t pay heed to such as the water tank placed on their roofs, if not cleaned on regular intervals contaminates the water stored in it.”
He further added, “Also, in urban India, Reverse Osmosis (RO) is one of the most effective water treatment processes being practised and widely used for water purification by the majority of the population. It is generally used for home water treatment to remove salts, chemical toxins, organic contaminants, dyes, pesticides and microbes. In this process, the raw water is forced (with pressure) through a dense membrane filter that prevents the passing of impurities. Although, the Reverse Osmosis process has certain benefits such as it does not produce or use any harmful chemicals, yet water consumed after the treatment through the RO process is devoid of useful minerals. Unless minerals are added back, the RO water could have harmful effects on health. Therefore, it is very important that the water you drink must contain the right minerals to maintain the balance of the body.”