The drinking water and sanitation department has given the clean chit to rice mills operating around Hatia Dam after finding the water of the reservoir safe for drinking and free of any pollutants.
Executive engineer in charge of Hatia Dam Riaz Alam said tests showed no chemical component was present in the water and it was safe for drinking.
“The rice mills are situated 8 to 9km away from the dam and there is little scope of effluents from them being discharged into the reservoir. The test carried out by us showed that the water at Hatia dam contained no harmful chemicals,” Alam told The Telegraph.
Following complaints that the rice mills around Hatia Dam were polluting the water there, a team of drinking water and sanitation department first collected samples on November 29 and then again on December 3 from the water body and sent it for testing.
Mills like Shreya Rice Mill, Narmada Agro-Product Pvt Ltd, Baba Rice Mill, Krishna Rice Mill, Satya Narayan Agro-India Pvt Ltd and Sri Vishnu Rice Mill are among those functioning around Hatia Dam.
One of the three big dams located on the outskirts of Ranchi towards the west, Hatia supplies drinking water for nearly one-third of city households living in places like Dhurwa, Heavy Engineering Corporation areas, Hinoo, Argora and Doranda. The other two reservoirs supplying drinking water are Rukka and Kanke dams.
A few months ago, The Telegraph had carried a report about the dam’s depleting water level and the under-construction Ring Road, which runs parallel to the reservoir, was suspected to be the reason. A team had been constituted comprising engineers from the drinking water and sanitation and road construction departments to find out the reason behind the phenomenon. The team later blamed the poor monsoon of the previous years and said Ring Road was not the reason.
“In the last three years, rainfall was poor and hence the water level in the dam fell drastically. This year, despite good rains, the water level rose slowly,” engineer in chief of the drinking water and sanitation department Sajjad Hassan said.
The Hatia water test report reached the office of Alam on Friday evening. Alam, however, said they will once again collect water samples from Hatia Dam and send the same to a laboratory for assessing whether the water contained high levels of iron.
“At our laboratory, there is no facility to test iron content in water. Hence, we will have to send the sample to some other organisation,” Alam said.