19 years on, water woes continue to haunt Taj city
On the morning of May 21, 1993, 21 people in Ghatia of the Khatik Pada area in Agra died after drinking water from municipal taps. A committee set up to investigate the deaths said the water was highly contaminated.
Subsequently, senior Congress party leaders who visited the city and the then Governor Moti Lal Vora promised jobs and financial support to the families of the victims.
"They had also promised a much-needed barrage on the Yamuna river and upgrading facilities at the two water works in the city. But not a single promise was fulfilled," says a resident of the Khatik Pada.
To highlight the grim situation in Agra, activists Monday organised a clean-up on the banks of the Yamuna in the city.
"We want the government to see the condition of the river and the water supplied by the Agra Water Works. Their lop-sided priorities are a matter of concern," Shravan Kumar Singh, convener of the Rivers of the World Foundation, told IANS.
"Instead of safe drinking water for the people, they are discussing a new airport in the Agra region and a new Express Highway from Lucknow to Agra. These can wait but not adequate and safe water supply provision," Singh stressed.