Wednesday, 20 February, 2019

Ktaka: Villagers empty lake after HIV+ woman jumps into it

Karnataka Villagers want lake drained after HIV-positive woman drowns in Ktaka: Villagers empty lake after HIV+ woman jumps into it
Melissa Porter | 07 December, 2018, 22:01

Afraid they would contract HIV/AIDS, villagers informed authorities they would not use it till fresh water was filled.

HUBBALLI:The residents of Morab, around 30km from Hubballi, have refused to drink water from their village lake after an HIV-positive woman committed suicide by jumping into it a week ago.

"After the patient with suspected HIV committed suicide, people of the village have started removing water from the lake". "When an HIV-positive person dies, the virus also dies", Dr Glory Alexander, founder-director of an organisation that treats people suffering from the virus, told The Times of India.

Officials under pressure from local villagers have begun the process to drain the 36 acre lake completely. In the last four days, more than half the water from the lake has been drained out.

Speaking to CNN News18, BC Satheesh, the Zilla Panchayat Chief Executive Officer (CEO) said, "In some places, the water from the lake is used without treating even for consumption". The body of the 40-year-old woman was recovered by the police of Navalgund taluk from the lake at Moraba village in Dharwad on November 28.

Gram panchayat member Laxman Patil said the villagers refused to see reason, so pipes have been sucking water out for the past four days.

Despite attempts by a local official to explain to the villagers that the water poses no threat, the villagers were adamant in their decision.

District authorities have chose to distribute water from Mallaprabha river, a tributary of the Krishna river, among villagers for the time being. "I will talk to officials to allow us to fill the lake from Malaprabha canal till December 20 or 22". "There is no risk of infection spreading from the water", she said.

According to a health official, the woman who died in the lake had tested positive for HIV in October, but it was yet to be confirmed by a government centre.