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07 December 2018, 10:00 | Silvia Roy
The virus is usually transmitted through sexual intercourse, infected blood and from an infected mother to the baby in her womb or through breastfeeding, but the villagers' alarm at the discovery a week ago drove the demand for the lake to be drained, the official added. The villagers undertook the job after the body of a woman, who is thought to have been infected with HIV, was found floating in the lake.
Biradar called the villagers' act as totally unscientific as HIV doesn't spread through water. According to CNN News18, the Malaprabha Canal sustains 40 other villages in the Navalgund taluka. Unable to reassure the locals, authorities are now draining the 36-acre lake and planning to refill it with water from the Malaprabha canal.
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The lake spread over 23 acres of land locally known as Jagirdar's lake is the only source of drinking water for locals.
Authorities attempted to convince them that HIV can not be transmitted by water and that there's no risk of getting the virus by drinking the water. The reports claimed that she had been suffering from HIV and that possibly could be the reason why she committed suicide.
Panchyat Development Officer Nagaraj Bidralli said that the local body's members failed to convince the villagers against the idea of draining the lake, The New Indian Expressreported. "The authorities must drain out water and fill it with fresh water to save the lives of villagers". "There is no risk of infection spreading from the water", she said.
"The process of pumping out water from a sprawling lake is going on since Sunday", an official said. "The decision was also approved by the local panchayat", Naveen Hullur, tehsildar of Navalgund taluk, said. There is another problem, the taluk administration wants us to finish the task by December 6 as the Malaprabha right canal will be closed after December 8, and we have to fill the lake.
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