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The news of water contamination in some areas of Thimphu should be taken seriously. Playing blame game doesn’t help anybody.

We are told that the thromde has taken necessary actions to make water safe to consume, but the affected residents say otherwise. They say that flushing the tanks and disinfecting the reservoirs and the main water lines is not enough. As we report, some residents of the affected buildings are suffering from health issues due to contamination. Comparing the issue with the past incidences and brushing it away conveniently is being irresponsible.

Going by the ceaseless digging we do on our roads, such disturbances to utility lines are bound to happen. In the recent incident that happened in Motithang and Changangkha, officials blamed the contractor who was working on road development project. While such maintenance projects will have to be carried out from time to time, they should not risk the health and well-being of the people.

What led the problem to become serious was lack of information. The contractor, who said contamination happened when workers were trying to divert the sewerage leakage towards the drain, was not told about the damaged done to the water lines. When the complaints began arriving from the residents, tshogpa did her best to inform the residents  about water contamination. It is understandable that she could do only so much. While doing the rounf, she found some houses locked.

Thromde saying that its compliance is only until the water meter point, after which it is the responsibility of the house owners, is a pity. But it had a point when it found that the building owners had not done what they ought to have – clean the water tanks at least twice a year.

What this incident has taught us is that the problem could have been averted if all the people had taken their responsibilities seriously. But then, more importantly, it showed us that there is a need to improve the way we plan our urban development.

Let this be a lesson.

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