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District administration seals 7 illegal tubewells in Gurugram

Gurugram: Acting against water mafia in Gurugram, the district administration sealed seven tubewells which had been illegally installed near Ullawas village near the Golf Course extension road.

The decision was taken on the orders of Gurugram district commissioner Amit Khatri. The administration also plans to file a police complaint against the tubewell operators, after which FIRs will be filed. The operators have been identified as Kaluram, Hansraj, Sheru, Ankit, Shyoraj and Mastram. Most of them are residents of Ullawas.

"Water mafia are drawing up water from these illegally-installed tubewells, storing it in tankers and selling it off to residents of unregularised colonies. A team led by block development and panchayat officer Navneet Kaur raided the sites and sealed the tubewells. The district administration has taken cognizance of the matter," an official from the district administration said.

Gurugram district was marked as a 'dark zone' by the Central Ground Water Board in 2013, which means the groundwater level has dipped below a specified limit. To install a tubewell in Gurugram, one needs prior permission from the district commissioner.

As per the norms, the district commissioner can give permission for the installation of tubewells only for drinking water, and that too at places where no water supply is provided by the public health engineering department/municipal corporation/HSVP.

The Punjab and Haryana high court had ordered a complete ban on borewells and tubewells in December 2010 and asked the administration not to give out permits without the consultation with the court. Moreover, the high court recently sought reports on the status of groundwater extraction and the number of borewells in Gurgaon.

The groundwater level has declined in Gurgaon over the last 20 years, with the city witnessing a decline at a rate of 1.5m to 2m every year.

A recent official report had cited that in four years that is from 2014 to 2018, the groundwater levels in Gurugram has dropped to 10 metres. The average levels at which the groundwater can now be tapped in Gurugram is at 36 metres.In 1974 the groundwater reserves could be tapped at just six metres.

Allegations are that on account of illegally dug bore-wells and use of underground water, groundwater level has gone dangerously low.

The day is not far when there would no water available. stated the High Court expressing concern on the falling groundwater reserves in the city.

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