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‘Stringent government regulation key to regulate use of groundwater’

Environmental experts and academicians say that a stringent governmental regulation on the depth to which the groundwater can be extracted, is the need of the hour to battle water scarcity.

‘Stringent government regulation key to regulate use of groundwater’
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The lake being restore on Wednesday as the revenue officials look on

Chennai

Dr G Bhaskaran, Head, Centre for Water Resource & Management, University of Madras, said that the indiscriminate use of groundwater will affect our water table. “There needs to be a proper water management in place, to ensure water resources are effectively used. In addition, the groundwater is exploited up to depths of over 3,000 feet, which will affect natural aquifers. The government should put stringent regulations, ensuring that people don’t go beyond a specified depth, while extracting groundwater,” said the academician, who was one of the panellists at a panel discussion titled ‘Reduce, Recycle and Reuse’ held at the American Center, US Consulate General, on World Water Day. 

The governmental regulations should also extend to the protection of waterbodies, said Dr N Godhantaraman, Deputy Director, Human Resource Development Centre. 

Dr Kaneez Fathima, Associate Professor, Justice Basheer Ahmed Sayeed College for Women, said there should be an increased awareness on the reuse of water. “It eventually is up to us to use our water resources judiciously. In 2002, many households constructed rainwater harvesting structures passionately. We need to conserve our rainwater to feed it back to the aquifers for the future,” she concluded.

Ariyalur officials’ effort pays as lake ‘drowned’ by encroachers resurfaces 

In what seems to be case of coincidence, on the occasion of World Water Day, revenue officials retrieved an irrigation lake, which had been encroached and used it for farming purpose, in Ariyalur on Wednesday. 

According to revenue officials, after the rains in 2015, areas adjacent to Mangalam lake were completely flooded and the lake reached its full capacity. Later, when officials checked the records they found out that the water body had been encroached upon by a small group, who had been carrying out minor agricultural activities in the vicinity. As the villagers themselves could not trace the lake, the officials formed a special team and found that a portion of the Mangalam lake, measuring 3.95 hectare, was being used for agricultural activities. 

On Wednesday, as per the directions of Collector A Saravanavelraj and Commissionerate of Revenue Administration, officials started retrieving the encroached portion by initiating desilting activity in the Mangalam lake. The entire project was being carried out with the support of corporate cement companies in the locality, which have provided the revenue officials with the necessary equipment. An earthmover has been provided and the project would be completed in another five days, officials said.

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