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Friday, April 29, 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 activist Bejon 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 it here.

This post won the 'Crusade Against Chlorine ' Contest. :)


  1. Hey that's scary. I use an RO filter too in bangalore. I need to read up on the article that you mentioned.

  2. So many years of science and technology drained so much sludge into our waters that we needed more science to design water filters. So finally we have a filter... but now he claims that it chemicals into the water. He says the chemicals work all their way up to his brain and make a locha of all this thoughts and hence he should not be held responsible for his words and actions.. What a way to explain your womanizing ways dude!

    Raj - the womanizer. You may write a post and beat around the bush - but your intentions were clear right in the very first line of the post! :)

  3. Hey Rachna, yup.. very scary...my chemistry teacher almost gt a restrainin order on me :P..jokes apart, yup, its very scary scenario..especially cos nt many ppl r aware of this banned chemical bein used in our water.. thnx fr goin thru my post :)

    V Dada, glad 2 see u back man.. as usual, outspoken dada ...dude, u still hvnt gotten over of tht post :)..thnx fr being back, man:)

    Thnx Srujana fr ur comments :)

  4. I think this is what makes sense. You have mentioned how to get rid of this and we should do it. However, what is the need for the day is to have a technically superior and harmfree, chemical solution that can replace Chlorine.

  5. You're right Hemal...costlier technologies do exist which do not follow this means..but the chlorine means is the cheapest n hence makes sense in a cost conscious country like ours..if we did hv a better chemical alternative 2 chlorin, nothin like it!!!

    Thanks fr goin thru my post n voting, Hemal!! :)

  6. Very well written! N not to forget, it makes me sit up n think too..

  7. Thanks Vinutha..thnx fr droppin by :)

  8. Thanks Vinutha... thnx fr droppin by :)

  9. Thanks Magic..thnx fr droppin by :)

  10. Loved it. I know what chlorine can do to you - the damn thing in the swimming pool damaged my hair! Thankfully the club has now opted for constant filtration.

    And all the best for the contest.

  11. Well, chlorine hs worse hair raising effects :)..Thnx Purbaji fr dropping by :)

  12. Nice. Freaked out enough to want to know more :)

  13. Well in a sadistic sort of way, it gud tht u're freaked out 2 act on it :D.....thnx fr droppin by, Saro :)

  14. Hey mamu..ur writin is dasu..bole toh sahi hai baap :)...!!!!!!!!!!

    dude grt post n u writin is very cool...liked ur post n promoted....

    do drop by @ http://nitinamlani.com and let me no ur comments !!!!!

    A bientot !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Hey thnx Nitin...thnx fr droppin by..sure :)

  16. Congratulations on winning the first prize Raj. Well done!

  17. Thanks a lot for ur wishes n support, Abhaji..really appreciate :)

  18. Great post and informative...congrats!!!!

  19. now that you are mentioning this..I am pretty much concerned if there is any such problem with Aqua guards...guess not but who knows and it is a very normal thing for the companies to use cheap materials where there are no regulations and laws and earn bucks on them...thanks for the info...very informative :)

  20. Water is a big issue in India today. First there were rumors of the super bug in Delhi water and now this. Most of apartment blocks in Indian cities don't even have regular supply and depend on ground water or tankers. As far as drinking water is concerned people are depending on buying it or using purifiers. I am not sure what would be a good approach but your blog has put many doubts in my mind. Thanks for writing.

  21. Thanks Reshmi...do drop in more often :)

    Thanks Swati for droppin by.. ya Swati..it never hurts to check esp since the regulatory rules here are quite lax.

    You're right Vikram that so much is happening in a space that is so essential to all of us. Glad it set you thinking. Thanks Vikram for dropping by. :)

  22. Thanks for this man!!! this is so ridiculous and the public is ignorant!

  23. Anytime k10..glad to hv helped, if I did :)

  24. bacardi = ethanol? oops didnt know it back then :(

    imp lesson - never lick the spoon? haha

    nice post.liked the way you started, humourously & moved on to something serious

  25. Thanx Sujatha fr droppin by, fr commenting n fr ur kind words.. thnx a lot again.. do drop by more often Sujatha :)