Laws in India to Prevent Water Pollution
India has several laws which protect water from being polluted. The existence of these laws however have been more or less disregarded by many industries, small businesses and companies which produce waste that is directly dumped into water bodies. The enforcement of such laws is clearly a weak effort or else our waters would not be suffocating under the burgeoning burden of garbage and toxic waste.
Today. let us find out about the laws that currently prevent water pollution throughout the country. In upcoming posts we will cover region specific acts which are meant to prevent water pollution.
- The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974
The Act aims at preventing water pollution by the establishment of a Central Pollution Control Board and a State Pollution Control Board which constantly promotes the importance of clean water and also advises the government on necessary steps and various matters relating to water pollution. Section 24 of this Act imposes a duty on every person to avoid dumping toxic matter into water bodies.
- The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 2003
Under this law, companies which consume water and include any operations or process which leads to the production of toxic and non-biodegradable substances are required to pay cess. Section 3 of this Act exempts industries where the use of water is below a certain limit as specified by the law.
- The River Boards Act, 1956
In addition to advising the government on the development of drainage systems, irrigation and water supply, the River Boards Act also aims at controlling pollution of the rivers and identifying steps to prevent pollution of the waters.
- The Indian Fisheries Act, 1897
This Act prohibits the use of noxious materials, dynamites or any other harmful substance for the purpose of killing fishes and other marine life.
There are several other sections included in acts like the Merchant Shipping Act, the Indian Ports Act, and the Poison Act which also aim to prevent water pollution in India. The only problem is that few of these laws are effectively implemented. In our next post, we will talk about the laws specific to the region of Mumbai which prevent water pollution and also discuss how the presence of these laws have had very less impact on the water bodies of Maharashtra, especially Mumbai.