In this village in Assam, almost every family has a cancer patient! Reason, arsenic in water


GUWAHATI: Ground water contaminated with arsenic has become a matter of grave concern for the villagers of Pati Darrang area under Darrang district. The contaminated water has made the villagers vulnerable to serious diseases like cancer.

Cancer has become such wide spread that almost every family of the village has a cancer patient in their homes. Over the past few years, around 150 people have died to cancer in Pati Darrang village.

“We have become helpless. The number of cancer patients in our village is increasing rapidly,” said a villager.

In a study carried out by the department of chemical science of Tezpur University, it has been found that groundwater in Pati Darrang village has been contaminated with 30-114 PPB arsenic which is above the normal level of 10 PPB.

Meanwhile, the group of researchers under Prof. Rabin Dutta has helped the villagers to use their low-cost method to fight arsenic toxicity.

But despite the situation turning grim, Public Health Engineering department has allegedly taken no step to provide safe drinking water to the villagers. Though a water supply scheme was initiated almost 35 years ago in the village, it has been no longer functional after two years of its installation.