The situation is grave and every day drinking water is misused when it constitutes 3% of the total water bodies present on the earth. To address this situation, Heritage Institute of Technology, Department of Biotechnology, Kolkata organized a debate session today to celebrate National Science Day and to address the drinking water crisis which is projected in the near future. The event was organized in association with National Environmental Science Academy (NESA), West Bengal Chapter. Dr. Amit Krishna De, EC Member, NESA, inaugurated the programme along with Dr. Pranay Chaudhuri, Principal, Heritage Institute and Dr. Somsubhra Sen Sharma, Former Scientist, Department of Science and Technology Govt. of India. Mr. Abhishek Dutta, Mtech student, Jadavpur University and also an alumnus of Heritage Institute presented some amazing facts on drinking water crisis in India. He displayed some shocking statistics which says that 10 litres of water is used to produce one A4 sheet of paper, 70 litres of water is required to make one apple and 91 litres of water is required to make one pound of plastic. He gave some useful data from FAO which says that India has the least total water resource per capita in compare to USA, China, South East Asia and Brazil.
Later on Ms. Sudipta Dey, a Faculty member of Department of Biotechnology, Heritage Institute spoke about phenolic waste water management and biological treatment of such water. The debate started of with the Btech students of Heritage Institute speaking for and against the motion on the topic “pricing of drinking water”. For the motion students focused on the different treatment processes with which ground water is treated to make it available for drinking. Such process is very much costly and misusing drinking water will demolish the essence of such treatment processes. Also in Hungary, US and other foreign countries, water is priced especially industrial water and drinking water is subsidized. If drinking water is not priced, one cannot stop the misuse done daily.
Against the motions students stressed on the fact that one third of the India’s population is poor and can’t even afford the essential commodities of daily life. If in such a situation, water is priced, how this population will survive. Besides, consuming drinking water is the fundamental right of every citizen of India being a democratic country.
The debate session ended with giving vote of thanks to the best performers which was done by Dr. Amit Krishna De and Dr. Anniruddha Mukherjee, HOD, Environmental Science Department, Calcutta University who were present as judges during the debate.