Using water from water tankers – basically, groundwater from deep under the surface – then think twice.

A shocking revelation by the Central water resource ministry last week was that underground water in Bengaluru Urban and Rural areas contains dissolved solids like hard metals and chemicals over and above the permissible limits.

According to the Centre’s estimates, groundwater in Bengaluru Urban and Rural districts has chemicals and other dissolved solids above permissible limits or the national average, thus rendering it unfit for human consumption.

The seemingly fresh water with crystal clarity may lure you, but what goes unnoticed is the extent of total dissolved solids in that water in Bengaluru.

Its consumption might land you with severe kidney problems, cancers, blue baby syndrome and dental disorders as the water is contaminated with high levels of chemicals, metal fluorides, nitrate, salinity and iron, besides sewage due to unscientific handling of solid waste and sewage that allows sewage to percolate down into the groundwater.

Karnataka health department, too, has ordered mandatory health certificate for water supplied through water tankers to ensure pure and contaminant-free potable water.

“The survey and the groundwater quality studies were taken up by the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) and other state departments, showing sporadic occurrence of contaminants in groundwater above the permissible level prescribed by Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS). Various scientific bodies and premier research organisations have been directed to take up studies to assess the impact of these contaminants on human health,” the report stated.

As per the Centre’s data, water samples from Bengaluru revealed salinity levels above the permissible limit of electrical conductivity above 3,000 micro mhos/cm. Similarly, fluoride levels stood above the permissible levels of 1.5 mg/litre and nitrate levels above the permissible quantity of 45 mg/litre.

Bengaluru’s unregulated sewage is the root cause of all problems, especially the high levels of nitrates in the groundwater. “More than 50 percent of sewage is let into the storm water drains, thereby allowing it to percolate naturally and get into the underground water table. Unless we do something to change the sewage conveyance system.

Anthropogenic is largely human-made pollution by unscientific handling of the sewage.”


* Kidney-failure 

* Fluorosis affecting the gums and teeth 

* Contaminants get inside body through water and feeding on vegetables, fruits grown downstream of polluted water bodies and serious and chronic health disorders.