The Assam Kaziranga University

If no action is taken, Guwahati’s groundwater level, which is currently classified as “safe,” might soon become “semi-critical.”

According to the most recent data available from the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB), the present stage of groundwater extraction is roughly 57 per cent, based on total extraction versus total groundwater available for extraction.

Official sources said, “Once it crosses 70 per cent, it will be categorised as semi-critical. If remedial measures are not taken, the city would soon fall in that category.”

In Guwahati, the CGWB monitors the level of groundwater in 47 drilled wells and five deep tubewells. While this year’s data is still being collated, groundwater levels were within seven metres of the surface in 90% of dug wells last year.

“Monitoring has not been adequate, and the above statistics may not give the actual picture. Absence of any monitoring mechanism from the State government’s end has left the problem unattended for years together,” the sources said. In the North East, only Nagaland has its own monitoring mechanism.

The CGWB is presently proposing to install at least eight DWLRS (digital water level recorder) for continuous monitoring of the city’s groundwater.

Experts also recommend that commercial groundwater extraction should be moved to rural areas.

The Assam Kaziranga University