Rs. 10,000 to be paid for drawing underground water through bore well in individual houses?
Jal Shakti Ministry has announced that strict action will be taken if all those who are using the motor to draw groundwater in their houses fail to obtain NOC from Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) by paying Rs.10,000 by 30-09-22.
An image of a public notice published in a newspaper has gone viral on social media, stating that the Jal Shakti Ground Water Authority of the Central Government Ministry of Water has announced that a fee of Rs.10,000 has to be paid to use water from well and bore well in the houses.
What is the truth?
This information started spreading on social media from the advertisement of “Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) Public Notice issued by Jalshakti Ministry” in Dinathanthi newspaper on 29th June.
In a public notice issued by CGWA, “Attention all users of groundwater including for swimming pool/mining projects/infrastructure/bulk water suppliers/government water supply agencies in urban areas/group housing societies/drinking water for residential apartments & domestic use.
All existing or new groundwater users are requested to obtain permission to draw groundwater from CGWA by 30.06.2022. All existing users are hereby given an opportunity to register to draw groundwater by submitting the filled application along with a payment of the registration fee of Rs.10,000 by 30.06.2022. Strict action will be taken against users who continue to draw groundwater without obtaining NOC from CGWA,” it said.
The CGWA Public Notice says “Drinking Water & Domestic Use for Residential Apartments”. It refers to groundwater drawn for drinking purposes and domestic use by apartments. The notification does not directly refer to ordinary individual houses.
Also, a public notice published on the CGWA website has said that all groundwater users must obtain permission. However, all other conditions remain unchanged.
Guidelines (2017) document for granting no-objection certificate (NOC) for extraction of groundwater available on the CGWA website states, “Individual households/ connections having more than one tube well/ bore well or drawing ground water through the pump of more than 2 HP from a single tube well/ bore well in the premises will be eligible to apply for NOC under this category. Others are exempted.”
Apart from all these, “Groundwater development and management are regulated by the State Groundwater Authority or Government Orders in the following States / Union Territories. The CGWA has not issued a NOC to draw groundwater in these States / Union Territories” listed Tamil Nadu as one of the states not regulated by the CGWA. That is, matters like NOC to draw groundwater in Tamil Nadu are carried out as per the order of the State Government.
Adding to it, it is mentioned in the CGWA website that the public notice in newspapers applies only to non-exempted categories in 20 states/UTs regulated by CGWA. Hence this is not applicable to Tamil Nadu.
The information being circulated that the Jalshakti Ministry is levying a fee of Rs 10,000 for the use of groundwater through wells and motors in ordinary houses is being spread because of a misunderstanding of the public notice issued by the CGWA. It is apparent that the notice is not applicable to Tamil Nadu.