LAHORE At last the Water and Sanitation Agency has comprehended its responsibility and decided to install arsenic removal water filtration plants in 21 localities across the City to save the residents from serious hazards of falling in lethal diseases. The WASA has found high concentration of arsenic in underground water at 21 different places in the City, raising alarms in the power corridors and forcing the premier water supply and sanitation agency to take measures to save the Lahorites from serious health hazards. At all these places, the level of arsenic is well over set standards of World Health Organisation and at certain points the concentration is so high that it is impossible for the laboratory equipment to measure. According to the WASA officials, the process of installing arsenic removal water filtration plants at 21 identified tubewells would start during the current month to ensure supply of safe drinking water to the residents. The officials said that the Punjab government would provide a special grant of Rs 25.2 million for the installation of 21 plants, each costing Rs 1.25 million. Arsenic removal water filtration plants would be installed at six tubewells each in the Walled City and Shahdara, three in Misri Shah and one each in Shadbagh, Anarkali, Ravi Road, Samanabad, Industrial Area and Baghbanpura. The concentration of arsenic at Elahi Park Misri Shah, Food and Vegetable Market, Qila Lakshman Singh, Lorry Adda, Naser Bagh, Main Outfall Road and Pakki Thatti Samanabad is beyond range of calculation, Lady Safi Park 58.4 parts per billion, Gujjar Pura A-Block 49.92 ppb, Korgi House Misri Shah 55.02 ppb, Iqbal Park no2 66.27 ppb, Iqbal park no1 107.8 ppb, G T Road Shahdara 52.54 ppb, Saeed Park 46.74 ppb, Qazi Park 155.2 ppb, Ravi Cricket Ground Shahdara 56.91 ppb, Majeed Park 62.8 ppb, Paracha Colony 80.98 ppb, Industrial Area 56.75 ppb and Mehmood Booti 69.56 ppb. The WHO standard for arsenic concentration is 10 ppb. Arsenic is a carcinogen which causes many cancers including skin, lung, and bladder as well as cardiovascular disease. Some research concludes that even at the lower concentrations, there is still a risk of arsenic contamination leading to major causes of death. Disease outcomes included several types of cancer, diseases of the circulatory and respiratory system, diabetes mellitus, and kidney and liver diseases. Elevated mortality rates were observed for all diseases of the circulatory system. According to the report of Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR), the water sold in pet bottles (locally called as mineral water) is also contaminated with arsenic. According to the official report, out of 58 major companies, 21 companies are selling arsenic contaminated water and unfortunately 18 of these are located in and around Lahore.