Thursday, December 26, 2013

Kerala don't have safe drinking water , so "Kerala model" is inferior to "Vibrant Gujarat" - New Spin

           Rural households in Kerala are the worst hit with only 29.5% having access to safe drinking water, according to the study". (Read TOI article here) More over Modi supporters were quoting this article to prove "Gujarat Model" better than "Kerala model".

  I have read a news article in Times of India(TOI) about drinking water issue in Kerala. As per TOI their report is based on National Sample Survey Office(NSSO) . As a Keralite I was shocked to read this article and knowing ground realities.

            Knowing reputation of TOI I have gone through NSSO and its surprised me. TOI reporter has only gone through only first table from a list 22 table. TOI tweaked 'improved source of drinking water" to access to drinking water. To get a clear picture I will give a list of observations in NSSO comparing Kerala & Gujarat.

1a. Improved Source of drinking water -  Kerala - Rural 29.5% Urban 56.8%
                                                             Gujarat - Rural 89.2% Urban 95.6%

1b.Sufficient water throughout Year -       Kerala - Rural 86%     Urban 91.6%
                                                               Gujarat - Rural 86.3% Urban 96.1%

2a.House holds having drinking water facility in premises - Kerala - Rural 73.5% Urban 81.9%
                                                                                       Gujarat - Rural 57.6% Urban 84.1%

2b.House holds having drinking water facility within .2 km - Kerala - Rural 22.7% Urban 16.2%
                                                                                          Gujarat - Rural 26.3% Urban 11.4%

3.Average time to fetch water from outside premises (minutes) - Kerala - Rural 16 Urban 11
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 21  Urban 14

4.Average waiting time to fetch water from primary source outside premises (minutes) -
                                                                                                 Kerala - Rural 9  Urban9
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 12  Urban 20

5.House holds treating drinking water  -                                     Kerala - Rural 82.4% Urban 90.1%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 85.4%  Urban 87.9%

6.Households getting good quality drinking water  -                    Kerala - Rural 94.7% Urban 90.2%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 94.1%  Urban83.1%

7. Sufficient water throughout year for household activities  -       Kerala - Rural 84.6% Urban 88.8%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 88.1%  Urban93.4%

8.Households who got daily supply of water-                             Kerala - Rural 62.2%  Urban84.3%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 78%    Urban81.7%

9.Households without bathroom facility  -                                   Kerala - Rural 9.7% Urban 5.3%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 53.9%  Urban 15.7% 

10.Households with bathing facility within premises  -                  Kerala - Rural 95.7% Urban98.8%
                                                                                                  Gujarat - Rural 93.9%  Urban98.7%

11.Households without latrine facility  -                                      Kerala -  Rural 2.8% Urban 1.2%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural  58.7%  Urban 6.2%

12.Household with electricity for domestic use-                          Kerala - Rural 96.7% Urban 98.7%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural 95.9%  Urban 98.9%

13.Household living in a house with pucca structure  -                Kerala - Rural 85.4% Urban 90.8%
                                                                                                 Gujarat - Rural  80.1%  Urban  97.9%

                         Improved source of drinking water is not equal to safe water. NSSO defined improved source of drinking water as bottled water, piped water into dwelling, piped water to yard/plot , public tap/stand pipe , tube well/ borehole , protected well, protected spring and rain water harvesting. TOI changed this to safe means remaining water sources are unsafe . Most of the water resources in Kerala are "open well" or "open spring". But as a state having 6 - 8 months of rain in a year, it will be a stupid analogy to call Kerala's open well and spring as unsafe.  

                    When TOI gave a headline "Kerala worst hit in access to protected water" they forget to note that  82.4% households in Rural and 90% households in urban drink treated (Boiling, filtering, using chemicals, electronic purifier etc ) drinking water. May be an intentional error to show that "Gujarat model" is superior to "Kerala model" 

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