One fine winter, I reached the general ground for my evening football game along with my colleagues and friends from various departments. As I was putting on my boots, I got this strong smell of human waste. With disgust, I asked a friend of mine who has been posted here in Longding for the past 11 years, “Buddy, Do you smell shit all over the ground?” To which he replied, “Come winter and it is a common thing here in Longding town due to lack of water supply from the department and other sources. People excrete in polythene bags and throw it in and around, wherever they can. The general ground is one such place; careful not to step on any plastic bags nearby”. Further, he added with a smirk: “The drainage which the lower colonies use as a source of water might also be contaminated with these packets”.
I was utterly shocked, surprised and disgusted with that information, adding to the fact that I myself reside at one of the lower colonies and depend on the drains for water.
I questioned myself and the people around, why and how can they even think of doing that. But eventually I understood that the scarcity of water has compelled them.
Water scarcity seems to be an age-old problem in Longding headquarters. Only a handful of residents are being connected and supplied with water by the PHE Department. A majority of the population depends on rains during summer and eventually the drain, posing a great threat to their health and ultimately life. People have become used to it, and it seems like they have lost all hope in the government regarding the water supply.
I came to Longding in early 2019 and ever since, I have been struggling for an ounce of water every day. Being an occupant of a government accommodation, I have many times requested and enquired the concerned department for the supply of water, but all in vain. Ultimately, I have joined the masses out of compulsion and as long as I am here I have to accept the contaminated drainage as my only source of water.
With this experience, I request the people of Longding to come forward and raise their voice regarding the issue. If not for you, then for the generations to come.
I would also like to request the MLA, the deputy commissioner, the concerned department and the pressure groups and civil bodies of Longding to peruse the issue and come up with a solution for the welfare of the people of Longding.
Let’s put an end to finding toilet packets around Longding.