Water Crisis: Residents of state’s largest slum grapple with drinking water crisis | Bhubaneswar News

Bhubaneswar: The residents of Odisha’s largest slum, Salia Sahi, on Wednesday morning staged a demonstration in front of a water supply station of the Water Corporation of Odisha (WATCO) in the locality here, demanding drinking water supply to their homes. The protesters, consisting of women and children, gathered in large numbers between 6 am and 11 am at the supply station, carrying buckets and pots and raised slogans, demanding immediate action to resolve the crisis. The protest was called off after the WATCO officials assured to look into the issue. Thereafter, supply was restored in the slum by afternoon.Pramila Behera, a leader of the slum-dwellers, said, “The residents had been grappling with severe water scarcity for the past five days. The authorities had to resort to providing water through tankers in the last two days. But the quantity of water supplied through these tankers was insufficient to meet the residents’ needs, which ultimately led to today’s demonstration.”The residents expressed their frustration over the lack of a proper water supply system in the area, which has left them at the mercy of the authorities for their basic need for clean drinking water. “Though we have three water tanks, we did not receive drinking water during the last five days. We have faced similar problems earlier as well. The protest highlighted the urgent need for the authorities to address the issue of water scarcity in the area. The government must take immediate steps to ensure regular and adequate supply of clean drinking water to the residents of Salia Sahi and other such slum areas in the state,” Kalandi Behera, a slum-dweller, said.Pradipta Kumar Swain, the CEO of WATCO, said the water crisis in Salia Sahi happened after a water pipeline burst in the area. “We have solved the issue and restored the supply of drinking water from afternoon,” he added. Salia Sahi area comes under wards 16, 20, 21 and 26 of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation.

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