Tag Archives: India

Providing Safe Drinking Water to Slum Households, Siliguri, West Bengal, India

Bhar D, Bhattacherjee S, Mukherjee A, Sarkar TK, Dasgupta S. Utilization of safe drinking water and sanitary facilities in slum households of Siliguri, West Bengal. Indian J Public Health. 2017 Oct-Dec;61(4):248-253. doi: 10.4103/ijph.IJPH_345_16.

BACKGROUND: With the rapid expansion of urban population, provision of safe water and basic sanitation is becoming a challenge; especially in slums. This is adversely affecting the health of the people living in such areas.

OBJECTIVES: The study was conducted to measure the proportion of households using improved drinking water and sanitation facilities and to determine the association between diarrhea in under-five children with water and sanitation facilities.

METHODS: A community-based, cross-sectional study was conducted among 796 slum households in Siliguri from January to March 2016 by interviewing one member from each household using a predesigned and pretested questionnaire based on the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program Core questions on drinking water and sanitation for household surveys.

RESULTS: A majority 733 (92.1%) of slum households used an improved drinking water source; 565 (71%) used public tap. About two-thirds (65.7%) household used improved sanitation facilities. About 15.8% households had reported diarrheal events in children in the previous month. Unimproved drinking water sources (AOR = 4.13; 1.91, 8.96), houses without piped water supply (AOR = 4.43; 1.31, 15.00), and latrines located outside houses (AOR = 3.61; 1.44, 9.07) were significantly associated with the diarrheal events in children.

CONCLUSION: The utilization of improved drinking water source was high but piped water connection and improved sanitary toilet used was low. Association between diarrheal events and type of drinking water sources and place of sanitation might suggest fecal contamination of water sources. Awareness generation through family-centered educational programs could improve the situation.

Mr. Barack Obama is Simply Misinformed on Climate

“Former President Barack Obama said he couldn’t have a debate with someone who thinks man-made global warming is a hoax while speaking at a summit in India on Friday.” click here

Consider this plot of New Dehli surface temperatures. Yup, climates change. The changes are cyclical. The central trend line is actually slightly negative.

Fluoride Effects IQ of 12-14 Year-Old Children, India

Razdan P, Patthi B, Kumar JK, Agnihotri N, Chaudhari P, Prasad M. Effect of Fluoride Concentration in Drinking Water on Intelligence Quotient of 12-14-Year-Old Children in Mathura District: A Cross-Sectional Study. Journal of International Society of Preventive and Community Dentistry. 2017 Sep-Oct;7(5):252-258. doi: 10.4103/jispcd.JISPCD_201_17.

AIMS: The aim was to assess and correlate the influence of the concentration of fluoride in ingested water on the intelligence quotient (IQ) of 12-14-year-old youngsters in Mathura district.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 219 children were selected, 75 from low F area, 75 medium F area, and 69 from high F area. The concentration of fluoride in the routinely ingested water was estimated using “Ion Selective Electrode method”; then, Raven’s Test was utilized to estimate the IQ of the study participants. Independent t-test, Tukey’s post hoc, Chi-square an analysis of variance tests were used to associate the mean and proportion IQ scores in high-, medium-, and low-fluoride regions along with inter-group significant differences (P ≤ 0.05).

RESULTS: The comparison of IQ score showed that 35 (46.7%) participants from the high fluoride and 10 (13.3%) participants from the medium-fluoride areas had below average IQ. Further, it was noted that the lowest mean marks were obtained by the children in the high-fluoride region (13.9467) followed by those in medium (18.9467) and uppermost in least noted fluoride area (38.6087). However, gender-based intergroup comparison did not produce a significant relation with fluoride (P ≥ 0.05).

CONCLUSION: Concentration of Fluoride in the ingested water was significantly associated with the IQ of children. It has also coined the proportional variability in mental output in accordance to the ingested fluoride level. As two sides of a coin, fluoride cannot be utterly blamed for a lower intelligence in a population; it puts forward a fact that intelligence is a multifactorial variable with a strategic role played by genetics and nutrition to develop cognitive and psychosomatic activities in an individual.


New Dehli, India Surface Temperature Trend Decline (1996-2017)

Himalayan glaciers are doing just fine, thank you

“The claim that Himalayan glaciers are set to disappear by 2035 rests on two 1999 magazine [phone] interviews with glaciologist Syed Hasnain, which were then recycled without any further investigation in a 2005 report by the environmental [activist] group WWF. It was this report that Dr Lal and his team cited as their source.”  click here for a full discussion at the Notrickszone.

Uranium Exposure from Drinking Water, Rajasthan, India

Jakhu R, Mehra R, Mittal HM. Exposure assessment of natural uranium from drinking water. Environmental Science: Process Impacts. Nov 2016 

The uranium concentration in the drinking water of the residents of the Jaipur and Ajmer districts of Rajasthan has been measured for exposure assessment. The daily intake of uranium from the drinking water for the residents of the study area is found to vary from 0.4 to 123.9 μg per day. For the average uranium ingestion rate of 35.2 μg per day for a long term exposure period of 60 years, estimations have been made for the retention of uranium in different body organs and its excretion with time using ICRP’s biokinetic model of uranium. Radioactive and chemical toxicity of uranium has been reported and discussed in detail in the present manuscript.

480 Million India Inhabitants Exposed to Elevated Arsenic and Fluoride

Chakraborti D, Rahman MM, Chatterjee A, Das D, Das B, Nayak B, Pal A, Chowdhury UK, Ahmed S, Biswas BK, Sengupta MK, Lodh D, Samanta G, Chakraborty S, Roy MM, Dutta RN, Saha KC, Mukherjee SC, Pati S, Kar PB. Fate of over 480 million inhabitants living in arsenic and fluoride endemic Indian districts: Magnitude, health, socio-economic effects and mitigation approaches. Journal of trace elements in medicine and biology. 2016 Dec;38:33-45. doi: 10.1016/j.jtemb.2016.05.001.

During our last 27 years of field survey in India, we have studied the magnitude of groundwater arsenic and fluoride contamination and its resulting health effects from numerous states. India is the worst groundwater fluoride and arsenic affected country in the world. Fluoride results the most prevalent groundwater related diseases in India. Out of a total 29 states in India, groundwater of 20 states is fluoride affected. Total population of fluoride endemic 201 districts of India is 411 million (40% of Indian population) and more than 66 million people are estimated to be suffering from fluorosis including 6 million children below 14 years of age. Fluoride may cause a crippling disease. In 6 states of the Ganga-Brahmaputra Plain (GB-Plain), 70.4 million people are potentially at risk from groundwater arsenic toxicity. Three additional states in the non GB-Plain are mildly arsenic affected. For arsenic with substantial cumulative exposure can aggravate the risk of cancers along with various other diseases. Clinical effects of fluoride includes abnormal tooth enamel in children; adults had joint pain and deformity of the limbs, spine etc. The affected population chronically exposed to arsenic and fluoride from groundwater is in danger and there is no available medicine for those suffering from the toxicity. Arsenic and fluoride safe water and nutritious food are suggested to prevent further aggravation of toxicity. The World Health Organization (WHO) points out that social problems arising from arsenic and fluoride toxicity eventually create pressure on the economy of the affected areas. In arsenic and fluoride affected areas in India, crisis is not always having too little safe water to satisfy our need, it is the crisis of managing the water.