India India issues the guideline for abstraction of saline ground water

On November 6, 2020, India’s Central Ground Water Authority issued the detailed guidelines for abstraction of saline ground water (the definition of the saline water: water having above EC above 5000 µ siemens/cm at 25℃). Any user desirous of utilizing saline groundwater is permitted to extract saline ground water and will be exempted from payment of ground water abstraction / restoration charges. However, all such users need to have proper effluent water disposal plan to avoid degrading of environment/ surroundings. Further, NOC shall not be granted to new major industries in over-exploited assessment units.


(The following is quoted from the original text)

Completely Saline Assessment Units

  • All the users where saline groundwater withdrawal is more than 500 KLD, applicant needs to submit Impact Assessment Report including water level /water quality /land subsidence in and around the project area.
  • Ground water quality data of existing bore well/ tube well/ dug well from any NABL accredited laboratory or Govt. approved laboratory.
  • Oil and Mining companies to submit approved plan by the concerned Govt. agency/ department in case of abstraction/dewatering or injection.
  • All the users’ need to adopt rain water harvesting as per building bye laws within premises.


Partially Saline Assessment Units

In the areas where saline water occur in lenses or fresh and saline zones overlying/underlying each other, saline water ingress is expected information on depth wise occurrence of saline/fresh ground water zones/ interface shall be made available by Regional Office, CGWB.

  • All the users need to draw saline ground water more than 100 KLD shall submit Impact Assessment Report indicating saline – fresh water interface, impact of saline ground water abstraction on the ground water regime or impact of saline water pumping on saline water ingress in coastal areas. The saline water withdrawal shall avoid up coning of saline water into fresh water, mixing or ingress towards land.
  • Piezometer should be constructed and regular monitoring to be taken up for piezometric level & water quality of the aquifer from which the saline water is pumped, as well as, the adjacent/ overlying/underlying fresh water aquifers.
  • In case well starts yielding fresh water instead of saline water, project proponent shall immediately inform the Regional Office, CGWB. The project proponent shall have to pay groundwater abstraction /restoration charges as per the guidelines.
  • All the users’ needs need to adopt rain water harvesting as per building bye laws within premises


The Guideline can be downloaded from the following URL.

Author / Responsibility


Senior Research Associate, Research & Consulting Dept. EnviX Ltd.

Business Performance

In charge of South Asia (India, Bangladesh, etc.), South Korea, Latin America (Mexico, Colombia, etc.) and Turkey for managing infomation on the environmental regulations


MA, Environment, Development and Policy, University of Sussex