In an effort to conserve the existing groundwater level, the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) has decided not to give permission to sink new borewells in the core areas of the city.
Following the decision taken in a joint meeting with the members of Karnataka Groundwater Authority on February 27, the board, which is the authority to grant permission for new borewells, has not processed a single application since March 01.
According to a BWSSB official, it was decided not to grant permission for new borewells in the core areas where Cauvery water is supplied and that no applications would be processed till the monsoon.
However, those areas where there is no supply of Cauvery water, especially in 110 villages located on the outskirts of the city, new applications may be entertained.
The official said as people living on the fringes of the city completely depend on borewell for their water needs, new applications will be processed there. But of the hundreds of applications received, hardly three to four are from the 110 village areas, he added.
Kemparamaiah, BWSSB engineer-in-chief, said as there is more demand for water during summer, it is quite obvious that more people want to sink new borewells.
“We are not completely restricting. However, we also have to check excessive drilling of borewells that leads to exploitation of groundwater,” he added.
Kemparamaiah said there should also be some restriction on the extraction of water from borewells also as they are bound to be exploited. There is a need for some metering system to limit drawing of water from certain borewells.
According to an official from the Karnataka Groundwater Authority there was no metering system to check the extraction of water from borewell till now. However there are plans to implement the system in the future, he added.
Since January 2019, 633 applications received to sink new borewells. Only 138 applications have been processed and approved.
Most of the applications from the core areas rejected. According to official records, there are about 3.71 borewells in the city.