Bengaluru: While water has is a talking point for the citizens, the policy makers are yet to come out with concrete action plan to deal with its scarcity and poor quality.
The classification of river water quality and lake monitoring data released by the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) reveal that out of 19 rivers in the state, none of them are potable for drinking.
The data from April 2018 to March 2019 reveals that 17 river samples out of 94 fall in Class D category, which could only be used for propagation of wild life and fisheries. Whereas 48 samples fall in Class C, the water of which could be used for drinking after conventional treatment.
None of the major rivers in the state, including Arkavathi, Bhima, Tunga, Krishna, Shimsa and Cauvery have conformed to Class A stanadards. Dakshin Pinakini river near Mugalur bridge conforms to Class E.
The 58 lakes/tank samples also reveal the sorry state of water bodies in the city, where the water quality has been on the decline.
The Allasandra tank in Yelahanka has not been able to improve water quality from its current Class E index while Byransandra tank, Ulsoor and Jakkur lakes fall in Class D category.
The water quality monitoring network is operated under two programmes — Global Environment Monitoring System (GEMS- 5 locations) and Monitoring of Indian National Aquatic Resources System (MINARS- 58 locations).
Water samples are analysed for 28 parameters, which include 9 core ones, 19 physico-chemical and bacteriological parameters along with field observations. Eight trace metals and 15 pesticides are analysed once a year to assess the water quality.
On April 30, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) scrapped the 2017 notification by the union Environment Ministry which had diluted the standards for upcoming sewage treatment plants. The tribunal has now ordered for the stringent norms for the construction of existing and upcoming Sewage Treatment Plants (STP) in the country.
The tribunal noted that the relaxed standards will deteriorate the water quality and degrade the environment and be a retrograde step....