Quality, Standards and Testing

Water needed for human consumption, industrial purposes or other requirements must cater to certain minimum standards. The quality of any water is defined by its physical and chemical properties (characteristics). Physical properties include its appearance (colour, clarity and odour, perhaps also its taste) while the chemical properties refer to the constituents dissolved in it. Some of the physical properties are measurable and can be expressed in units of measurement while others like appearance, odour or taste are clearly subjective. However, all the chemical constituents can be measured accurately.

Drinking water must meet certain quality standards to safeguard the health of the people. The permissible and desirable limits of various parameters in drinking water have been detailed as per the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) standard specifications for potable water. These parameters are included in BIS-10500-1991. The various parameters covered include colour, odour, pH, total dissolved solids, hardness, alkalinity, elemental compounds such as iron, manganese, sulphate, nitrate, chloride, fluoride, arsenic, chromium, copper, cyanide, lead, mercury, zinc and coliform bacteria. The tolerance limits for inland surface waters for various classes of water use have been published by the Central Water Commission. Per ISI-IS: 2296-1982, the tolerance limits of parameters are specified as per classified use of water depending on various uses of water ranging from Class A to Class E.

What does the water that one drinks contain, what substances are dissolved in it and what are their safe limits? What are the issues that affect water quality? For more detailed information on all this, please read our FAQs on Rules, Regulations & Standards concerning water and Equipments used to measure water quality and quantity

  • Decades of skating over environmental concerns have clearly cost us dear. The folly of pursuing better crop yields using chemical fertilisers in an indiscriminate manner has been surfacing lately. “Decades of agricultural abuse using fertilisers, herbicides and pesticides have taken its toll on us...
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  • The United Nations, in its sustainable development goals (SDGs), has earmarked 2030 as the year by which universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all is to be achieved. To be able to do so, we would need to ensure that the 663 million people who currently drink water...
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  • Asia has the highest number of people exposed to flooding: Report As per a new report by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Asia has the highest number of people exposed to flooding from possible storm surge events, particularly in China, I...
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  • We have requested water test of sample post RO process at Home. Before RO process hardness of water is 400 PPM and after 52 PPM Below is the result of water test (only those are beyond limits are mentioned). Fluoride 1.22 mg/l (value obtained) 1 mg/l (MAX ACCEPTABLE LIMIT (AS PER IS 10500:2012) ) 1,...
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 1 year 10 months agoread more
  • The current set of government programmes such as Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM), National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) and Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) have gone a long way in improving access to water and sanitation services in India. With an eye on achievin...
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  • The people of the Marathwada region have been facing severe water crisis for more than three decades. Despite adverse circumstances, the Akoladev panchayat in the Jalna district has set an example for other panchayats by solving their water woes through community participation and effective water ha...
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  • Rampura, situated in Bulandshahr district in western Uttar Pradesh, is one of the 1,200 villages on the banks of the 300-km long East Kali, a tributary of the Ganges. The river is named after goddess Kali who, according to the Hindu mythology, is fierce and fights evil by ingesting it. Till the 198...
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  • Audit reveals poor quality of water in UP rivers The CAG audit report for the year 2015-16 has revealed that the quality of water in major rivers and water bodies in Uttar Pradesh is not as per the government norms. The primary reason for the poor water quality is inadequate sewage and industrial e...
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  • E-Water Harmoniser (EWH) is a simple solution for all hard water related problems with zero water wastage and zero maintenance once installed. It has umpteen benefits for domestic, industrial as well as agricultural purposes. It does not require any salts, chemicals, magnets or electricity. It has m...
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  • I purchased a new RO water purifier system. Bore water TDS level is 650 PPM, after RO purification water TDS level is 70 PPM and reject water TDS level is 180 PPM. My doubt is that the TDS level of reject water is less than the borewell water - is it right or wrong?
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 4 days agoread more
  • In Hyderabad, water tankers are the dominant source of daily water supply. Research for the project Ensuring Water Security in Hyderabad Municipal Area gave us some insights into the quality of water carried by these tankers. When the water is pumped from borewells in villages, it is not always tran...
    arathiposted 2 years 1 week agoread more
  • This is Vinay here recently have constructed my home near Bannerghatta Road in Bangalore, where in have drilled a borewell to 850 feet. The water force was so much that I couldn't drill further. Once I started using the water, I noticed it changes to brown colour and smells bad i.e. once I start the...
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 1 week agoread more
  • Present TDS level is 24, is this within the accepted range / limit?
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 2 weeks agoread more
  • Sir, we live in an apartment where the recycled water and the fresh water is stored side by side. There is a wall that divides these 2 tanks. Is it safe to continue this method of storage? Is there any regulation or case law to restrict this practice?
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 3 weeks agoread more
  • Which water system should I use for well water with TDS of 1200 - 1500 I mean which gbd membrane should I use my to machine For TDS level of 1300 to 1400?
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  • I want to set up a greywater treatment unit at home, in this regard I want to know the characteristics of washing machine wastewater. Can someone tell the exact parameters for washing machine wastewater?
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  • Seven percent of rural India has no access to clean water: World Water Day report As per WaterAid’s new report--Wild Water: State of the World’s Water 2017--63.4 million people have no access to clean water in rural India. With 67 percent of India’s population living in rural areas, this mean...
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  • This story is of Punawli Kalan village in Uttar Pradesh, where a community with the support of a women-led federation, solved its water woes by developing a community-owned water supply system. Punawli Kalan village is situated in Jhansi district, in the drought-prone Bundelkhand region of Central ...
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  • Last year I have Purchased a Dr. Aquaguard Magnna HD RO+UV. After 1 Year when there technician come for maintenance he show me that the TDS of water is 129. He said that the, 129 TDS is very high. I have to change the cartilages. Can you please tell me what is the safe range of drinking water.
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  • Water pollution is a serious problem in India with 70 percent of its surface and groundwater resources contaminated by biological, toxic, organic, and inorganic pollutants. As a result, the socio-economic cost of poor water quality is high. Around 1.5 million children under five years die each year ...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 2 months agoread more

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Safer water and better nutrition were key in mitigating fluorosis problem in parts of the state.

Farhanuddin was just five years old when a pain in his knee began bothering him. It was 2013. Slowly, his legs began to change shape. They got so badly deformed that it began to affect his everyday life. He was gloomy and tired most times and had trouble walking. His parents thought that lengra bhoot or evil spirit was tormenting them like hundreds of others who were becoming crippled in the village of Tapatjuri in Nagaon district in Assam. Little Farhan could barely eat, wash or take a stroll without assistance.

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While Swachh Bharat Mission is focused on improving sanitation in the country, an ODF India remains a distant dream. Can corporate contribution ease the sanitation challenges India faces?

Despite making sanitation a national priority with Swachh Bharat Mission, 50 percent of India defecated in the open till 2014. The goal to make India open defecation free by 2019 seemed ambitious. The government provided funding but it also sought active participation from the corporate sector. Companies were compelled to loosen their purse strings as Section 135 of the Companies Act, 2013 made corporate social responsibility (CSR) mandatory.

CSR platform for WASH in Maharashtra

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Swachh Bharat Mission: Could the most ambitious cleanliness campaign in Indian history also be the most expensive failure?

India’s sanitation crisis involves huge cost. Transforming the country’s sanitation and waste management by 2019 is tall order. “Swachh Bharat Mission, the most ambitious cleanliness campaign in Indian history could well be the most expensive failure in recent times,” says Naina Lal Kidwai, CEO of FICCI and the Chair of India Sanitation Coalition, a platform for partnerships to work towards achieving sustainable sanitation for India. 

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Super tiny particles derived from table sugar can detect lead in water which is harmful for human consumption.

Nanotechnology deals with particles that are several thousand times smaller than the human hair, and it is being put to use in a variety of applications such as drug delivery and diagnostic tests. 

A group of Indian researchers has now developed a simple technique for deriving nanoparticles from table sugar and have shown that these particles can be used as sensors for detecting lead in water. 

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Policy matters this week

National Green Tribunal forms commission to inspect Bengaluru lakes

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News this week

KSPCB says Cauvery water can be used for drinking after conventional treatment

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A study finds an increased concentration of black carbon in Gangotri region during tourist seasons.

In a significant input for the growing debate on global climate change, a study by researchers at the Dehradun-based Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG) has found that there is a remarkable increase in the concentration of black carbon in the atmosphere near the pilgrim town of Gangotri in Uttarakhand during the two annual tourist seasons of April to June and during September and October. 

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Engaging with the fluorosis problem in Nalgonda gave the FKAN a chance to understand the problem and apply the solutions nationally.

Fluorosis continues to be a regional issue in Telangana to this day, even decades after the first cases were discovered in Nalgonda in 1937. More than three lakh people in the district are affected with skeletal and dental fluorosis, a stigma that has stuck for generations. Excessive fluoride intake leads to fluorosis, a chronic condition marked by mottling of the teeth and, if severe, calcification of the ligaments.

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INREM Foundation’s work helped develop protocols on designing proactive action on safe water and nutrition to help mitigate fluorosis in Jhabua.

In 2010, nine-year-old Kailash from Miyati village, Jhabua developed symptoms of skeletal fluorosis. Fluorosis, which affects millions of people in India, is a health issue caused due to high fluoride content in drinking water. Skeletal fluorosis is marked by deformed bones. It affected all aspects of Kailash's life including his education, physical functioning, social acceptance, etc.

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Hello,

We have extremely hard water of TDS 1500 and hardness 700 mg/ltr. We have a softener installed but it is not giving satisfactory results . A local technician informed us that softeners do not work with well water with this high hardness. Is this true? What is the solution for this? We have an RO installed for drinking purposes, but need soft water for other purposes mainly for residential use in the house. Please also suggest a good company that offers these services.

Thanks

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