Gurugram groundwater level saw steady fall over past two years: RTI

Experts blame excessive water extraction as reason for drop

Published - September 24, 2020 11:52 pm IST - GURUGRAM

All the four blocks of Gurugram district have recorded a steady fall in groundwater level over the past two years, revealed a reply to a Right to Information Act (RTI) application.

While the Gurugram city has been the worst hit with a maximum decline of around 3 metres, Farrukh Nagar has seen a minimum fall of less than a metre.

In reply to an RTI filed by Aseem Takyar, Gurugram’s groundwater cell revealed that the groundwater level for Gurugram block had fallen from 33.23 m to 36.21 m, though the fall for 2019-20 is only 0.36 m. Similarly, Pataudi and Sohna have witnessed a fall of 2.3 m and 2.55 m.

The groundwater level in the two blocks has depleted to 37.79 m and 26.11 m respectively.

Though Farrukh Nagar has witnessed a paltry increase of 0.43 m over the past one year, the level has gone down by 0.29 m since 2018.

Gurugram has been notified by the Central Ground Water Authority since 2011 to prevent sharp depletion of groundwater.

Water recharge

Former hydrologist M.S. Lamba blamed the situation on excessive extraction of groundwater for agriculture, construction and drinking purposes compared to the water recharged.

“Contrary to the popular perception, 90% of the groundwater extracted in Haryana is used for irrigation purposes. The State has around 8 lakh agriculture tubewells, but only around 50,000 tubewell connections for drinking water. Though the use of groundwater for irrigation could be little less in Gurugram, at least 50 water harvesting pits are required to compensate for the groundwater extracted by a tubewell in a year,” said Mr. Lamba.

He said that promoting crops that can be grown with less water, use of treated water for construction activities and making water harvesting mandatory for all upcoming buildings could help contain the situation.

Neelam Ahluwalia, Aravalli Bachao Campaigner, said that high levels of cracks and fissures in the Aravali hills made it a superior zone for recharging groundwater, but dilution of protective laws and illegal felling of trees and encroachments were eating away the mountain range.

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