HC calls for monitoring of groundwater extraction


‘Officials free to cancel licence of two units if they find violations’


The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court on Friday called for periodical inspection and effective monitoring of groundwater extraction while pronouncing orders on two separate public interest litigation petitions concerning water bottling units in Virudhunagar.

A Division Bench of Justices M.M. Sundresh and N. Sathish Kumar directed the closure of Seven Star Mineral Water bottling unit, Virudhunagar, after it failed to renew the ‘no-objection’ certificate granted by Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB).

The unit was asked not to extract groundwater for bottling purpose till necessary permission was obtained from the TNPCB and Water Resources department.

The court allowed Sugapriya Mineral Water bottling unit, Virudhunagar, to operate as it had obtained the ‘no-objection’ certificate from the TNPCB, Water Resources department and other competent authorities.

The court directed the TNPCB to conduct an inspection once a month and draw samples to ascertain the extent of groundwater extraction and water contamination. The Board was directed to draw water for samples not only from the premises of Sugapriya unit, but also from village bore wells regularly.

Public Works Department officials should also inspect the unit and find out if water was being extracted in excess of the licence conditions. If the authorities found any violation during the inspections, they could cancel the licence as per law, the court said.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 1:42:57 AM |

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