Water contamination case: Yadgir Police book panchayat officers
Yadgir: The police have lodged a suo moto case against the Panchayat officials here in connection with a water contamination case in which three persons died and more than 100 fell sick.
The incident was reported from Anapura village recently and Gurumathakal police have lodged a complaint in this regard, police said on Wednesday.
The tragedy occurred as the pipeline system was in shambles and sewerage water got mixed with the drinking water. The police said that the officers of the village panchayat were responsible for the incident.
The case had been lodged against Panchayat Development Officer (PDO), Secretary, pump operator and others for criminal negligence.
Lokayukta Justice B.S. Patil had taken Suo Moto cognizance of the incident and ordered a probe. The Lokayukta, Justice Patil had also directed the officials to investigate the matter thoroughly and submit the report by March 1.
Justice Patil stated in his order, “According to Section 58 of the Karnataka Gram Swaraj and Panchayat Raj Act, providing basic facilities and distributing clean drinking water is the basic responsibility of Village Panchayats. If officers fail to provide safe drinking water, it is a violation of Article 21 of the Constitution for the citizens. Besides, according to THE Karnataka Lokayukta Act Section 2 (1) it is equivalent to mismanagement.”
“The concerned officers have shown negligence and failed to provide drinking water to Anapura villagers. Chief Secretary of Rural Development and Panchayat Raj, Director for Drinking Water and Hygiene and Yadgir Zila Panchayat (ZP) CEO, Taluk Panchayat CEO and Anapura ZP President are directed to conduct spot inspection and submit a comprehensive report on the issue,” the Lokayukta Justice stated.
Three persons were killed and more than 100 fell sick on February 15 after consuming contaminated water.