Water in 29 major cities of Pakistan has become toxic and can lead to serious diseases.
This was disclosed in a written reply submitted to the National Assembly by Minister for Science and Technology Senator Shibli Faraz on Monday.
Replying to a question asked by PPP’s Mussarat Rafiq Mahesar, Senator Shibli stated that the water, contaminated with arsenic, iron, fluoride and bacteria, is causing skin diseases.
The National Assembly was informed that the Pakistan Council in Research of Water Resources (PCRWR), an institution of the Ministry of Science and Technology, tested underground water and found that samples taken from 29 major cities of the country were “extremely” harmful to health.
The water of Shaheed Benazirabad, Mirpurkhas and Gilgit-Baltistan is totally unsafe.
The contamination of water in Multan was 94 percent, Karachi 93 percent, Badin 92 percent, Bahawalpur 76 percent, Sargodha 83 percent, Hyderabad 80 percent, Muzaffarabad 70 percent and Sukkur 67 percent, according to the PCRWR report.
The House was told that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab have done a lot of work on the issue of drinking water and that the provinces should pass laws on the issue of drinking water beyond politics.
When Faraz was asked for an explanation on what steps the government had taken to provide clean drinking water to the citizens, he said water was a provincial matter after the passage of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution.
The job of his ministry was only to carry out tests of water through the PCRWR. He said the periodic water quality monitoring reports of the PCRWR were published and shared with the provincial and local governments for undertaking improvement measures at their end, the report stated.