Ghaziabad: The recent order of National Green Tribunal (NGT) to grant about a month’s extension to industries to apply for borewell permission does not mean that private individuals have got a free license to withdraw groundwater in a rampant manner from their submersibles.
It might be noted that a few residents of Indirapuram had requested the NGT to continue with the borewells inside their housing societies, as they do not have a water supply arrangement from either the Ghaziabad Development Authority (GDA) or the Ghaziabad Nagar Nigam (GNN). However environmental activist and one of the NGT petitioners through his NGO, Akash Vashishtha said: “The residents who are paying tax to either GDA or Nagar Nigam should ask these agencies to make provision for water supply to their homes.” He added, “The NGT reprieve for a period of one month is only meant for industry and not for domestic users.”
The NGT had passed an iconic judgment on April 13, 2017 (read: http://delhincrnews.in/2017/04/30/ngt-seals-the-fate-of-domestic-borewells/) banning the use of borewells by industry, builders and domestic users in Ghaziabad and Hapur districts. Further, the NGT had directed the Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) to enforce its order through the DMs of the respective districts and with the help of local police.
However, after the sealing drive against the industry was carried out many industry people have approached the NGT for reprieve. The CGWA reportedly also petitioned the NGT that as it has received several applications for using borewells, it would require a time-frame to dispose of these applications. Hence, the NGT had passed an order giving interim relief to such petitioners till the next date of hearing.
However, The original NGT order never meant that the residential areas would continue to use groundwater, only because they do not have adequate supply of water from GDA or GNN and sealing of borewells applies to them also. In Vasundhara, Vaishali and Indirapuram thousands of residents despite having water supply in their homes, are still using submersibles.
In Ghaziabad’s Vasundhara Sectors 17, 15, 13, 16, 12, 10, 7, 5 and Vaishali all sectors etc, the Nagar Nigam supplies Ganga water but still the residents are using submersibles rampantly- all of which would not help the cause of groundwater preservation, pointed out environment conscious residents of these colonies and of Ghaziabad and Hapur.
Meanwhile, the residents should also demand their share of water from the GNN and GDA if they feel they are being shortchanged in not getting the water supply due to them.
-Written by Prasoon Pant, Editor