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Thursday 23 March 2000

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Ahmedabad
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Water-starved mob goes berserk in city

The Times of India News Service

RAJKOT: The water crisis in the city took its first ugly turn on Tuesday when a mob of people from the labour-dominated areas under ward number 20 of the city stoned public and private properties.

An angry mob of residents from Nava Thorala, Ambedkarnagar, Khodiyarnagar, Sarvodaya Society etc. went berserk after being deprived of water for 10 days. Angry women banged their water pots on an parked ST bus and smashed its window panes.

They later resorted to a rasta roko agitation disrupting traffic. The distraught residents told TOINS that the women had to walk upto the Aji dam filter plant to fill water. The municipal authorities had been apprised of the situation but did precious little to solve the problem.

On Monday, the civic authorities had imposed a further five- minute cut on the water supply in the city. With this cut, the residents were getting lesser water, and even the force had been cut down drastically. Women from several areas said they had not even been supplied water through tankers. They said no one took their complaints seriously as they lived in backward areas. This had prompted men, women and children to take to the streets demanding immediate water supply.

Ironically, thought the city is engulfed in an unprecedented water crisis, the state government, the Water Supply Board and the municipal corporation authorities are yet to wake up from their slumber. Falla witnessed the first riots for water. Later, it was women from Manavadar, who ransacked the office of the mamlatdar after being deprived of water for 12 days. Then it was the turn of the Rajkot women from ward number 20.

The day is not far when such scenes will be witnessed in the entire city.



The Economic Times


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