In order to address the issue of groundwater depletion in Gurgaon, the Punjab and Haryana high court has directed the petitioners to highlight the core issues requiring appropriate directions from the court.
The directions came from the division bench headed by justice MM Kumar on Tuesday during the resumed hearing of public interest litigations filed by by one Sunil Singh and Qutab Enclave Residents Welfare Association, DLF Phase-I.
The level of groundwater has been declining due to illegal extraction of water through borewells, mainly by the private developers for construction purpose in the Millennium City.
The petitioners have sought directions to the state government and other concerned agencies to restrain illegal use and exploitation of groundwater for construction and other commercial purposes and to initiate strict action against violators.
Appearing for the petitioners advocate Amit Singh had informed the bench earlier that there are more than 18,000 borewells in Gurgaon and 50% of them are operating illegally without any checks. In 2004, the Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) revealed in its survey that over exploitation of groundwater in Gurgaon had increased 300%.
Arguing the case on Tuesday, Amit Singh submitted that there are around 31 borewells operating in DLF cyber city which need to be checked. However, Haryana government's counsel argued that water requirement of the cyber city is around 1.2 millon gallaons per day (mgd) whereas the cyber city is being supplied 1.8 mgd water, which is more than sufficient. On this, the petitioners counsel argued that if that is so then the extraction of water from bore-wells should be stopped immediately.
"As hundreds of buildings are coming up in Gurgaon, the Haryana government and CGWA need to inform the court whether they have ascertained any other source of water for commercial use when the groundwater can only be used for domestic purpose," said the petitioner's counsel. He further added that the construction work should be stopped until there is some other source of water.
Making it clear that the problem needs immediate and effective steps to be taken by the concerned authorities, the bench adjourned the case for February 13 for the court's directions.