The Local Government and Rural Development (LGRD) ministry has said Tk 75.61 lakh is needed for collecting and examining 1,065 samples of water supplied by the Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa) in its 11 zones.
The ministry mentioned the estimated cost in a report submitted to the attorney general’s office for placing it before the High Court.
Deputy Attorney General Motaher Hossain Sazu who received the report told The Daily Star that he would submit it to the HC today.
The bench of Justice JBM Hassan and Justice Md Khairul Alam will pass an order on this issue after receiving the report, he said.
The attorney general’s office was handed over the report after the HC on May 13 asked a committee formed by the LGRD ministry to inform the cost for examining the quality of Wasa water to the court.
DAG Motaher said the LGRD ministry has prepared the report based on information from the Dhaka Wasa. He, however, did not give further details.
While hearing a writ petition, the HC bench on May 13 expressed dissatisfaction at the LGRD ministry for not complying with its order to test the quality of water supplied by Wasa through a committee.
“How much money does the committee formed by the LGRD ministry need to test 22 bottles of water?” the court asked that day.
On May 13, writ petitioner Advocate Tanvir submitted a report to the HC saying that water supplied by Wasa is highly contaminated and unsafe in 16 areas of Dhaka.
The areas are -- Jurain, Daniya, Shaympur, Uttara Sector-4, Lalbagh, Rajar Deuri, Malibagh, Madartek, Banashree, Goran, Raysaheb Bazar, Mohammadpur Basila, Mirpur, Pallabi, Kazipara and Sadarghat, he said.
On May 8, Movement for Safe WASA Water, a platform of sufferers, held a mass hearing at the capital’s Jatiya Press Club where it showcased 22 bottles of water. They claimed to have collected the samples from different households of Jurain, Shyampur, Kadamtali and Mirhajirbag areas.
Two of the bottles had blackish water while the rest contained water that was yellowish.
About two weeks before that, some residents of Jurain appeared at the Wasa Bhaban in Karwan Bazar with lemons, sugar, and a jar of murky tap water “supplied by Wasa”.
As a means of protest, they wanted to “treat” Wasa MD Taqsem A Khan with sherbet. A few days prior to that, Taqsem had claimed that Wasa water was completely safe for drinking.