India, Mumbai pins hopes on ‘artificial’ rains – Haryana: Hry govt notice for illegal extraction of ground water

Posted in: Crisis Response, Drinking Water News, Global water resources, water conservation, Water Crisis, Water shortage
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Article courtesy of AhmedabadMirror | August 16, 2012 | Shared as educational material only

Mumbai, Aug 16 (IANS) Worried by the deficient rains this year, Mumbai’s civic body has decided to resort to ‘artificial rains’ at a cost of Rs.65 million, an official said here Thursday.

Brihan Mumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Commissioner Sitaram Kunte announced the decision even as the city’s water collection and storage remained around 30 percent deficient, with the peak monsoon drawing to a close by the month-end.

“Cloud-seeding will be carried out for 12-15 days mainly in the catchment areas of the Bhatsa and Vaitarna rivers in Thane district,” Kunte said.

The cloud-seeding, using a small aircraft, will be done by an Israeli company, Necorett, which has expertise in the field.

Initially, a budget of Rs.65 million has been approved for the venture which would be hiked to Rs.120 million, if required.

Presently, Mumbai has received enough rainfall to sustain the city’s water needs for another 250 days only, or up to mid-February 2013.

According to BMC, so far, only 831,318 million gallons of water is available, against last year’s 1,010,768 million gallons and 996,708 million gallons the year before.

The previous bad year was 2009 with 727,843 million gallons which had played havoc with Mumbaikars the following year (2010).

Taking precautions well in advance, BMC has imposed a 10 percent water cut since last month.

It is also insisting on rain water harvesting in industrial and residential complexes, reviving many of the 10,000-odd wells and tubewells to cater to local requirements and other measures for the 18 million people. If the cloud-seeding efforts bear rains, BMC is hopeful of scraping the next summer (2013) with minimum inconvenience to the people.

 

Haryana: Hry govt notice for illegal extraction of ground water.

Haryana Town and Country Planning Department has issued show cause notices to 52 colonisers who were allegedly engaged in illegal extraction of ground water for construction purposes in Gurgaon.

Close on the heels of directions from Punjab and Haryana High Court, the colonisers have been asked to explain the reasons for “withdrawing ground water for construction purposes” against the approval of CGWB or State Environment Impact Assessment Authority or Haryana State Pollution Control Board and also in violation of the last month’s orders of Punjab and Haryana High Court”.

The colonisers have been directed that ground water should not be used for construction purpose.

The Central Ground Water Board (CGWB), North-Western Region and Deputy Commissioner, Gurgaon have been asked to take necessary action for sealing unauthorised tubewells and borewells, a Haryana Government release quoting the Town and Country Planning Department’s spokesman said here today.

Taking a serious view of exploitation of ground water in Gurgaon, the Punjab and Haryana High Court here had a month back barred issuance of any fresh license for construction activity unless builders give an undertaking that underground water would not be drawn by them.

The Court had also directed Gurgaon’s Deputy Commissioner and CGWB to visit the sites where construction is going on to ensure that ground water is not used for the construction purposes.

A bench of petitions had earlier been filed in the High Court a Residents Welfare Association and other petitioners who alleged that the builders in Gurgaon had been extracting ground water using borewells for construction purposes while authorities had curtailed supply of drinking water in many areas causing agony to the common citizens.

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