Port Blair, March 15: CPI (M) has asked the Andaman & Nicobar Administration to explore the possibility of desalination of sea water to drinking water as has been done by the defence establishments in these islands, Lakshadweep Islands and at various cities on the mainland like Chennai to have a permanent solution to the drinking water crisis in Andaman & Nicobar Islands.

In a letter sent to the Chief Secretary, A & N Administration, D. Ayyappan, Secretary, CPI (M) Andaman & Nicobar State Organising Committee strongly opposed the unjustified curtailment in the supply of drinking water to the residents of Port Blair and rural South Andaman areas imposed by the Port Blair Municipal Council and APWD from 9th March, 2023.  He expressed concern that with the curtailment, now drinking water is supplied once in three days because of which people especially the women and children are facing difficulties. Besides, the duration of water supply has also been reduced by 5 minutes, as per the reports received from the residents. CPI (M) is deeply concerned over the present situation as, it is noticed, that despite spending a whopping amount of one thousand crore rupees for the Rutland Water Supply Project, the Administration and PBMC have failed to provide sufficient drinking water to a merely 2 lakh population of Port Blair town and rural South Andaman.  

Secretary, CPI (M) brought to the notice of the Chief Secretary that defence establishments at Port Blair are getting huge quantity of drinking water through desalination process. Ayyappan told the Chief Secretary that large size Desalination plants have been installed at various parts of defence areas through which lakhs of liters of drinking water are made available daily for supply to defence personnel.  CPI (M) suggested that it is high time that the A & N Administration should also explore the possibility of getting drinking water through desalination process in order to face the water scarcity occurring every year in the Port Blair town and rural South Andaman areas.  He further told the Chief Secretary that desalination of sea water will be a permanent solution for the water crisis faced by the people of these islands.  A good quantity of water supplied to the residents of Chennai and the whole population of Lakshadweep Islands is through desalination process.