Freedom from Flouride in Nalgonda sign now

June 24, 2002


To
The Chief Minister
Andhra Pradesh (State),
India.


Dear Honorable Chief Minister,

We the undersigned would like to bring the issue of potable water in Nalgonda District to your attention.

The Problem
As you are aware, the Nalgonda district is plagued with excessive Fluoride in ground water. Fluoride levels in excess of 1.5 ppm (mg/l) in water make it not suitable for drinking. The resulting Flourosis caused by the consumption of untreated water for Fluoride causes Dental and Skeletal Flourosis. Fluoride levels in most of Nalgonda District reach levels above 4 ppm (mg/l).

Excessive Fluoride Kills
Anyone who visits Nalgonda District can not help but notice clear degradation in humans. A child born in Nalgonda District will have stained and mangled teeth by the age of ten and brittle bones eroded by the disintegration of Calcium by twenty and are already unable to work by the time he/she turns thirty as the severe form of Arthritis sets in. It is very common to see people with bone deformities using a support to even walk at that very young age. It is this slow and painful process that puts people at a disadvantage with regard to work, live a normal life and be a productive part of society that must be prevented. The sad part is what ever we have done thus far has been grossly inadequate and the efforts have not reached the villages and towns that are affected by this disease.

Potable Water is Not for Sale for Political Mileage
Potable Water, the basic requirement for life support shall not be made political. It is the ignorance and lack of planning that has led us to this point with no evidence of progress made in making a difference and in bringing sustainable safe drinking water supply to our villages and towns. The more than 3.35 million residents of Nalgonda District are used to seeing political mavericks and gurus alike from all parties with no exception, with promises to provide solution to the Flourosis. It is abundantly clear to the people of Nalgonda that promises do not serve the public good the false hope has neither helped cure a single case of Flourosis nor provided an ounce of livelihood. People of Nalgonda District deserve better.

Flourosis, the Great Equalizer
The constant battle among various politicians seeking to get elected has not served the people except for the fact that everyone tries to gain mileage out of the sentiments of people. From rural farm workers and unemployed to the urban intellectuals involving teachers, journalists, businessmen, law enforcement and other officials everyone suffers from this disease of Flourosis and getting caught up with the false promises. On a second thought, the water problem actually has more impact on low and marginal income rural population in terms of taking their last hope for livelihood, their own two feet. It is sad to watch these hopefuls trying to vote at the end of the long lines.

Therefore, we the Non-Resident Indians of Nalgonda origin would like to highlight our chief concern for potable water for everyone in the District. We hope and trust that your administration will accept the responsibility to make lives of our Nalgonda Family better. And we hope it will be sooner than later to take all necessary steps including using the Nalgonda Technique and transporting if needed safer treated water for drinking purposes.

We wish to bring the attention of Flourosis problem to several organizations in and outside of Andhra Pradesh including World Health Organizations, UNCHS/Habitat, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and any other non-profit and government entities.

We express our solidarity and best wishes to the residents of Nalgonda. We pledge in addition that we have not and will not forget the plight of residents of Nalgonda and their fight for the basic need safe drinking water. We offer our knowledge base and any other help as needed. Please visit us at www.nalgonda.org for our pledge of support.

Signed in Solidarity with the People of Nalgonda,

From the hearts of People of Nalgonda Origin.

Sincerely,

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Cheryl HartBy:
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Honorable Chief Minister

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