Groundwater management protocols and pilot experiences – A presentation by ACWADAM
An understanding of identification of recharge area, its protection and recharge enhancement

This presentation by ACWADAM deals with introducing groundwater management protocols for wells in different phases of groundwater use. These protocols include geo-hydrology in watershed development, protection of recharge areas, efficient well use, pump capacity regulation, distance with respect to drinking water well regulation, depth regulation in drinking water well, regulation of agricultural water use and groundwater management through sharing.

The presentation deals with identification of recharge area, its protection and recharge enhancement. Water quality protection is looked into specifically in recharge areas and the agreements between recharge area and discharge area communities developed.

These protocols are explained through a case study of community based groundwater management in Pondhe village, Purandar taluka, Pune district, Maharashtra. The Groundwater Survey and Development Agency (GSDA) has recognised the Pondhe process as a standard for its aquifer management programme on the basis of ACWADAM’s study. The aspects dealt with in the presentation include:

  • An understanding of the aquifers is developed using water level data, hydrographs and water table contour maps. 
  • The institutional aspects related to development of dugwell irrigation in the watershed such as the gram sabha resolution on ideas like no irrigation outside the well user association and no deep borewells for irrigation are described.
  • It encourages groundwater use and electrification related to it only through a community based system. The system entails a ban on digging of new wells in the area, at least for the next 10 years. Deepening of existing wells and new wells will exclusively be done for the water user group. 
  • Each family in Pondhe watershed will get a water share equivalent to irrigating at least 2.5 acres of crop. Only those families who agree to all the rules and regulations of this water user group will be allowed to enter in sale and purchase of land in Pondhe. 

This presentation is part of the training modules on planning, development and management of groundwater with special reference to watershed management programmes by ACWADAM. Please write to ACWADAM at for sourcing these presentations.


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