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PHE water acidic, unfit for human consumption

SHILLONG: In what may be termed as shocking, the pH value of the drinking water being supplied in Shillong city by the Public Health Engineering department has been found to be 5.7 which means that the water supplied is highly acidic and unfit for human consumption.
The matter was brought to light when the Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM) Youth Wing took the initiative of taking the sample from the clear water storage of the Greater Shillong Water Supply Scheme located at 4½ Mile Upper Shillong to King Edward VII Memorial Pasture Institute and Medical Research Institute, Shillong, where the experts found the pH level of water to be 5.7.
Basically, the pH value is a good indicator of whether water is hard or soft. The pH of pure water is 7. In general, water with a pH lower than 7 is considered acidic, and with a pH greater than 7 is considered basic. The normal range for pH in surface water systems is 6.5 to 8.5, and the pH range for groundwater systems is between 6 and 8.5.
In general, water with a pH of less than 6.5 could be acidic, soft and corrosive. Acidic water could contain metal ions such as iron, manganese, copper, lead, and zinc. In other words, acidic water contains elevated levels of toxic metals which may be potentially dangerous to human health.
Speaking to media persons KHNAM Youth Wing president Thomas Passah said they had sent the water sample to Pasteur Institute on January 6 and were shocked to see the report where the experts had declared the water supplied by the PHE as unsatisfactory for human consumption.
The report adds that the water sample contained micro-biological bodies which can have adverse impact on health, Passah added.
The KHNAM Youth Wing has sent the report to the PHE minister asking him to take necessary steps in this regard.
He also added that as per RTI reports the PHE has not appointed any chemist or microbiologist to check the quality of water at the Mawphlang PHE dam.
“What is disgraceful is that even the United Christian Youth Organisation had in 1992 conducted a similar testing of the water and at that time also the water was found to be unfit for human consumption but till date the PHE has been feeding us acidic water,” said Strong Pillar Kharjana, general secretary of the youth wing.
“We strongly suspect that there is rampant corruption taking place in this department and we will unearth the same through RTI,” the youth wing members added.

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