Committee Report on arsenic contamination of groundwater, 20/01/2021

  • 20/01/2021

Report of Oversight Committee in compliance of the National Green Tribunal order passed in Original Application 384/2019 in  the matter of Sunita Pandey & Others Vs Union of India & Others dated 15/01/2021.

The matter related to the issue of contamination of groundwater due to arsenic and availability of clean drinking water in Bahraich, Ballia, Balrampur, Bareilly, Basti, Bijnor, Chandauli, Ghazipur, Gonda, Gorakhpur, LakhimpurKheri, Meerut, Mirzapur, Moradabad, Rai Bareilly, Sant Kabirnagar, Shajahanpur, Siddharth Nagar, Sant Ravidas Nagar and Unnao and certain other districts in Uttar Pradesh and other similarly affected areas in other parts of the country in the states of Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Punjab and West Bengal.

The Oversight Committee held a meeting with the concerned administrative officers on January 15, 2021.

JMD, Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam, mentioned in the meeting that as on June 30, 2020 there were 164 arsenic affected habitations in the state. Out of these 164 habitations, 45 have been covered with piped water supply as of now. The remaining 119 habitations have been covered by the Community Water Purification Plant.

With regard to the verification of the quality of water in the areas where Jal Nigam has completed the work, UPPCB, informed that from the entire state of Uttar Pradesh, 180 groundwater samples were to be collected. Out of 180 samples, till now they have collected and analysed 70 samples in total from different districts of the state and arsenic contamination was not found in any of these analysed samples.

With regard to the impact studies of arsenic on food chain, Agriculture Department stated that they had collaborated with National Botanical Research Institute (NBRI), Lucknow to perform this study. NBRI has performed this study in 20 districts covering 264 blocks in the state for which a draft report has been submitted by NBRI to Agriculture Department and the final report would be submitted within a month.