In Marriguda mandal, the population was 37,700 in 2021 and in 2011 it was 36,710. It drastically came down.
People in the mandal suffered from some form of deformity and were carrying death in their eyes. They were just a pack of dangled bones.
The reason? They were all consuming water full of fluoride. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), drinking water should contain 0.5 to 1 Part Per Million (PPM) but here in Munugode Assembly constituency – in all mandals – the water contained 25 per cent which is the most dangerous.
In Battupalli village in the Marriguda mandal, the fluoride per cent was 28 PPM, according to WHO. The WHO had warned the state government to take corrective steps else it would become a no-man zone soon. In the Munugode constituency, of the 40,543 people benefitting from Aasara pensions, the disabled are affected by fluoride accounting for 6,884 people.
The fluoride problem was detected during Nizam’s time and the then regime discouraged people from using underground water. It dug up a chain of tanks at Charlagudem, Tangadi tank, Munugode tank, and Solipuram. However, due to the negligence of successive governments, they became defunct over the years and rendered useless.
Since surface water was not available, the people were forced to consume underground water again and which resulted in a fluorosis problem.
The chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao who went touring the state during the separate Telangana movement was moved by the plight of people in Nalgonda, particularly Munugode. Soon after becoming chief minister, he launched the Mission Bhagiratha programme in 2016 which envisaged providing safe drinking water through pipes to every household.
A 90 MLD capacity water treatment plant was built with Rs 440 crore at Batlapalli. The people were greatly relieved and they never forget Mr KCR for his help which was not solved for the last 70 years by any government or chief minister.
By Gollapudi Srinivasa Rao