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Sunday, August 7, 2011

No chemical locha in my water please!!!

My Chemistry teacher was hot.

And I had a massive crush on her, which was one of the everlasting memories of my confused adolescence. Of course, I had to compete with 24 other similarly intentioned testosteroned classmates to gain her attention. To cut a long story short: Like every great love story, mine too ended without even starting (recurring story of my life).

After years of foul odors and failed experiments in labs, learning about atoms, molecules, elements, compounds, covalent bonds and periodic tables, the most important lesson I learnt in Chemistry was: Never lick the spoon.

For graduation, I opted out of chemistry and ever since, I had nothing to do with any chemicals except for my weekly rendezvous with ethanol (Bacardi for the uninitiated :P).

Or so I thought.

Now what if I tell you that somebody is putting harmful chemicals into all our bodies, making a fast buck out of it and killing all of us slowly? What if I tell you that harmful cancer-causing chlorine may have been entering your body and mine and that too, on a daily basis. And that you, your children, your parents, your siblings and your family may have been equally affected on a daily basis! Via your humble kitchen apparatus, the water purifier.

Shocked? Startled? Scared? Well, you should be.

The word of the day is Trichloroisocyanuric Acid or TCCA, for short – even though you might not be aware of it, but you may have been consuming this sinister compound on a regular basis. TCCA is used worldwide for sanitizing swimming pools and now, studies have shown that excessive swimming in such chlorinated pools can lead to cancer. Undoubtedly, TCCA is banned in the US from being used for household purification of drinking water. But the shocking fact is that in India, this material is used by many leading brands for household purification in their water purifiers – and we’re not even aware of it!!! Imagine feeding a baby with water from your chlorinated community swimming pool every day! Unnervingly, we may all be unknowingly drinking our way to cancer, kidney failure and other deadly diseases.

Alarmed? Agitated? Angry? Well, you should be.

This is serious stuff – Water is our basic life necessity and we resort to water purifiers so that the water we drink and feed our loved ones is as clean as possible. An Indian father will cut costs, conveniences and comforts to ensure a better livelihood for his children but will invest in costlier appliances in the hope that it will protect his family - big brands exploit this hope to make a quick buck. India does not have any existing standards for water purifiers and leading brands opportunistically use this loophole to employ such cheap but lethal materials to make a fast buck. We pay our hard earned money to protect ourselves and our families by trusting these leading brands and invest in such chemical based water purifiers. Its infuriating to know that to earn a few rupees more, leading brands are jeopardizing our lives. It enrages me to know that my 4 year old cousin may innocently be drinking this kind of water.

Thinking what can be done? Well, you should be.

As consumers, we should turn to safer chemical-free technologies like UV or Filtration(RO) for our water purification. However, not many people are aware of TCCA and its effects. The first thing is awareness – we need more people to be aware that this is affecting them, their families and their friends. Noted activistBejon Mishra has highlighted in his whitepaper the safety issues concerning water purifiers. Mr Mishra has teamed up with Indiblogger to spread awareness on this issue. This post is written as an attempt to make aware, awaken and alert others of this crusade against chlorine. You could do your bit to support this movement by:

  • Please download this image, copy it onto a word file and stick it in your office notice board so that more people can call the toll free number to get more information. (1800-11-4424)
  • A facebook event has been created to mobilize support. All you need to do is just go to this page, hit ‘Like’, Share the link and Spread the word.
  • Spread this post to as many people as possible.

As consumers, we have a right to know what chemicals are used in purifying our water. As Indians, we need to know if they are approved by world standards. As individuals, we need to know that the well being of our loved ones are not harmed.

Spreading the word? Well, you should be.

In the words of Mr Mishra himself, "this is not a movement against any company, any technology or against any water purifier brand but merely a small attempt at empowering us consumers". And yes of course, we’re saving ourselves and our loved ones, in the process.

So go to the facebook page, Hit 'Like', share n spread the word...

“No chemical locha in my water please!!!”

Hopefully, chemical ka chemical aur paani ka paani ho jayenge.

You can see other posts on this same mission. If you liked this post, vote for ithere.

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