West Bengal Panchayat and Rural Development and Public Health Engineering Minister Subrata Mukherjee today said the state government has launched a water ATM project to provide bacteria-free drinking water in schools.
The government is setting up water ATMs in the city and suburbs and the machines are made in Germany, he told reporters on the sidelines of an award programme here. “If someone can prove the presence of harmful bacteria in any such water ATM, he will be given Rs 2 lakh. We will be setting up 50 such water ATMs in Kolkata. Our main focus will be schools as well as hospitals in suburbs,” Mukherjee said.
He said this was a novel project and the pilot has already begun in some areas of Kolkata. “Arsenic contamination was most alarming in 90 blocks of seven districts but we have been able to contain it by 61 per cent and we are working to contain it fully,” he said.
“This has been possible with the help of the Japan International Cooperation Agency, the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank,” he said adding the government is drawing water from perennial sources of water like river through pipes.
The minister was present at the Royal Excellence Award 2018 function – an Award to recognise the achievements of social entrepreneurs in different walks of life.