According to a recent survey by Gallup Pakistan awareness about the need to use clean water for drinking has more than doubled during the last decade. In the latest survey nearly 60% of the urban households in Pakistan claim that they boil, filter or disinfect water for drinking. In a similar survey conducted by Gallup more than a decade ago in 1987, only 26% had made a similar claim. The survey was conducted among a statistically selected sample of households spread over the urban areas of all the four provinces of Pakistan, representing all socio-economic groups of the society. The respondents were asked a set of questions on “what was the source from which they received water for drinking and whether they used any method to clean it?”. In the latest survey 37% claimed they “boiled” their drinking water, 14% said they “filtered” drinking water, which included filter through traditional cotton cloth and more modern methods, 8% said they used some disinfecting chemical or medicine to clean water for drinking. The remaining 41% did not use any precautionary measure. In the 1987 survey the comparable figure for boiling water was 10%, 6% filtered water, 10% used disinfectants, while the remaining 74% used no precautionary measures. The analysts at Gallup have pointed out that those who claim to use precautionary measures for drinking water may not observe these preventive means all the time but they may be seen as aware of the respective methods and are likely to be their frequent users. The greater concern about drinking water may be directly related to environmental pollution and the supply of polluted water.
The survey was conducted by Gallup Pakistan, the Pakistani affiliate of Gallup International among a representative sample of more than 1000 men and women in the major urban areas of the country. The sample included a cross section of people belonging to various age, income, education and linguistic backgrounds. The text of this report can also be seen on the internet at: www.gallup.com.pk