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Water row: Delhi CM Kejriwal accuses Paswan of spreading lies, fear

Water row: Delhi CM Kejriwal accuses Paswan of spreading lies, fear
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Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accused Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Wednesday of spreading lies and misleading people on the issue of drinking...

New Delhi (PTI): Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accused Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Wednesday of spreading lies and misleading people on the issue of drinking water quality in Delhi, days after a Bureau of Indian Standards report said all samples collected from the city failed quality analysis.

Kejriwal retweeted a TV news clip in which a person, whose address featured on the list of places from where the BIS collected water samples, can be seen telling the media that there's no issue with the quality of drinking water and no sample had been taken from his home.

Targeting Paswan, he tweeted, "Sir, you said a sample had been collected from this person's house and it failed (quality analysis), but this man says no specimen was taken from his residence. He is also saying he is satisfied with the water quality. Why did you tell such a big lie?"

Later, the AAP MLA from Burari, Sanjeev Jha, alleged that the BIS also collected a sample from the house of a woman whose husband is the vice-president of Paswan's Lok Janshakti Party. Reacting to it, Kejriwal said he's disheartened to see such "misuse of power to spread fear among the residents of Delhi".

Earlier during the day, the chief minister nominated two members -- Delhi Jal Board (DJB) Vice Chairman Dinesh Mohaniya and Member, Water, Shalabh Kumar -- for a joint inspection and testing of water samples in the national capital with the Centre. The decision comes after a Bureau of Indian Standards report said all 11 samples collected from Delhi failed quality analysis on 19 parameters and the city's water was the most unsafe among 21 state capitals. Paswan later wrote to Kejriwal, saying since Mohaniya is a "political person", he may "nominate a non-political person in his place". Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan had challenged Kejriwal to name people for a team, comprising city and central officials, to test the water. The Centre has nominated two experts from BIS for joint inspection of water samples. On Tuesday, the Delhi government said it would set up 32 teams to collect water samples from each ward in the national capital, test them and put the results in public domain within a month. Kejriwal had earlier accused the central ministers of playing "dirty politics" and scaring people by saying that the city's drinking water is poisonous. He had said Delhi's water quality cannot be ascertained on the basis of just 11 samples.

The DJB had said that between January 1 and September 24, it collected 1,55,302 samples. Of these, only 2,222 -- around 1.5 per cent -- failed.

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