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630 mn people in SE Asia, India using water from faeces-contaminated source: WHO

630 mn people in SE Asia, India using water from faeces-contaminated source: WHO
Around 630 million people in the South East Asian countries, including India, use a faeces- contaminated drinking water source, the WHO on Friday said.

Worldwide, the global health body said, almost two billion people use a source of drinking water contaminated with faeces, putting them at the risk of contracting cholera, dysentery, typhoid and polio.

In a new WHO report, published on behalf of UN-Water - the United Nations inter-agency coordination mechanism for all freshwater-related issues, including sanitation, it asserted that the nations worldwide were not increasing their spending fast enough to ensure water and sanitation targets, under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) for 2030, are met. According to the UN-Water Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-Water (GLAAS) 2017 report, the countries have increased their budgets for water, sanitation and hygiene at an annual average rate of 4.9 per cent over the last three years. Yet, 80 per cent of the countries report that water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) financing is still insufficient to meet nationally-defined targets for WASH services.

"Today, almost two billion people use a source of drinking water contaminated with faeces, putting them at risk of contracting cholera, dysentery, typhoid and polio. Contaminated drinking water is estimated to cause more than 5,00,000 diarrhoeal deaths each year and is a major factor in several neglected tropical diseases, including intestinal worms, schistosomiasis, and trachoma," WHO Director, Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health Maria Neira said.
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