Nashik: Deficit rainfall last year and souring temperatures this summer have led to drastic fall in the district’s groundwater levels. However, the water and sanitation department of the Nashik Zilla Parishad (ZP) has banned as many as 161 water sources in the district having high fluoride content but still being used for drinking purpose.
“High levels of fluoride content in water leads to pitting of tooth enamel and its deposits in bones,” said officials of the Nashik ZP. They said in 2014-15, the department had taken up post-monsoon chemical analysis of water in which they targeted 8,164 sources and managed to get samples from 5,501.
ZP officials said after banning the water sources concerned, they hoped for a better monsoon. Moreover, they thought that chemical contamination will reduce with increasing water levels.
However, since the district did not receive good rainfall last season, the groundwater levels dropped further. Hence, there was no option before the authorities concerned than to continue the ban on these sources for drinking purpose.
The maximum number of sources are in Niphad and Yeola. Officials said the permissible limit of fluoride in the groundwater should be 1.5 mg behind every litre and maximum 1.9 mg per litre. However, the flouride content was been found to be 9.9 mg/litre in Yeola, 7.3mg/litre in Deola and 3.1 mg/litre in Chandwad
In the meantime, ZP officials have urged the gram panchayats concerned not use groundwater sources such as wells and borewells and look for other sources for drinking purpose. However, such sources can be used for washing and cleaning purposes. Moreover, the doctors of the places concerned have been asked to ensure that they increase the supply of calcium among the villagers to reduce the risk of fluoride in wate
Officials said as the water level dips, the level of chemicals increases in groundwater. Hence, they continue taking samples before and after monsoon to take precautionary measures.