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

  • Southern India reels under drought-like conditions All the southern states, except Telangana, are facing drought-like conditions. Tamil Nadu is the worst hit with 80 percent deficit in water storage in the state’s reservoirs, followed by Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala. The collective water ...
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  • Arsenic present in drinking water at many habitations: Centre The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation has informed the Rajya Sabha that drinking water in 66,663 habitations across the country is affected by arsenic and fluoride contamination. However, the government is working to provide...
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  • In the last few decades, India has seen an increasing number of people migrating from rural areas to urban cities in search of work and better living. These migrants often get employed in the informal sector as construction workers, vendors, domestic servants, etc. They also live in informal settlem...
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  • People of Sikkim stand against Teesta hydel project The proposed 520 MW Teesta Stage IV hydropower project in Sikkim is being opposed by the indigenous Lepchas, a local community in the state that worships mountains and rivers. The project that has been proposed by the National Hydro Power Corporat...
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  • Can I use reverse osmosis reject water in media filters back wash? where TDS of reject I have is 1200 ppm.
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  • We have analysed our bore water and give below the details for reference, comments and suggestion. Physical properties: appearance when analysed - turbid. After filtration - clear. PH value at 25 C - 6.95. Colour - Yellowish. odour - Agreeabe . turbidity - 21.0. Electrical conductivity - 5840 microm...
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  • What is the source that increases COD, TSS and alkalinity of Sewage water in a Hospital? My hospital consists of Laboratory, CSSD, Operation Theatre, Pharmacy, kitchen, etc. Also how can these parameters be kept under control
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  • After the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power with Narendra Modi as the prime minister of the country on May 26, 2014, the new government initiated several key programmes with the protection of the environment in mind. One of the major programmes that gained momentum instantly was the Ganga r...
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  • Hi, First, I would like to congratulate your organization for the stupendous work and effort that was put into building such a huge informative portal. I am an IT employee working in Hyderabad. I am working on a case study and needed some information. I would be grateful if at least...
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  • Hi, We are an apartment of 8  flats in Kaggadaspura, Bangalore (Near a contaminated Lake). We use borewell water for non-drinking purposes, and we have noticed that sometimes water comes out black in colour dissolved with black sediments, from the bathroom and kitchen pipes.  Home Applian...
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  • Jail term for selling packaged water above MRP: Government Consumer affairs minister, Ram Vilas Paswan has ordered to impose a penalty and jail term on those who sell bottled water above the maximum retail price (MRP). The order is in line with the section 36 of Legal Metrology Act, that clearly or...
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  • A severe crisis is plaguing the rivers in India. A study by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in 2013 has found that the number of contaminated rivers in the country has more than doubled over the past five years. This is mainly due to the deposition of untreated sewage and industrial efflu...
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  • Call for Nominations Fourth Edition of FICCI Water Awards December 14, 2016 at FICCI, Federation House, Tansen Marg, New Delhi. Introduction The FICCI Water Awards were launched under the aegis of FICCI Water Mission, to promote awareness, policy advocacy, sharing of best practices and th...
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  • Meghalaya in the northeast of India is richly endowed with natural resources such as streams and rivers as well as mineral resources such as coal, limestone, clay, sillimanite, uranium, and more. The estimated coal reserve in Meghalaya is around 576.48 million tonnes while limestone reserves are aro...
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A study finds that lack of coordination, poor stakeholder involvement, inadequate training and poor infrastructure hinder the enforcement of bottled water quality standards in India.

It is a fairly common practice among people to buy bottled drinking water while travelling in India with the hope that it will minimise the risk of getting ill due to contaminated water. But is this water safe to drink?

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FKAN’s work on preparing an action plan for the fluoride-affected Remuna block in Balasore shows how proactive policy work can help highlight the issue.

Rabindra Kumar Jena, the Member of Parliament (MP) from Balasore, Odisha knew that something was wrong with the health of people in a part of his constituency but he could not put his finger to it. By sheer chance, in 2015, he got to know that this seemed to be related to excessive fluoride in water, which caused a disease called skeletal fluorosis.

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On the completion of five successful consecutive editions of IFAT India, IFAT India has now established itself as India's leading trade fair for Water, Sewage, Solid Waste and Recycling. This show will provide opportunities to the attendees to display their products, technologies and new innovations in front of potential customers and to meet with key decision makers and partners. One to one interaction with clients, meeting with industry stalwarts, networking opportunities and product display will be some of the highlights of this show.

October 15, 2018 10:00AM

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News this week

Farmers anxious as government stops water supply from the Sardar Sarovar dam for irrigation

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Kaudikasa village’s two decades of struggle with arsenic contamination in drinking water ends with a new government scheme.

Kaudikasa is a small village with a population of just 350 people in the Ambagad Chowki block of the Rajnandgaon district in Chhattisgarh. Despite its small size, Kaudikasa village has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. Severe health problems have been reported from the village, thanks to acute arsenic contamination in its groundwater. In fact, of the 22 villages affected by arsenic contamination in Ambagad Chowki block, Kaudikasa village is said to be the worst affected.

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Hi,

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Floating wetlands have been constructed on Hauz Khas lake in an attempt to naturally restore it.

Located in the Hauz Khas urban village in the busy metropolis of Delhi is an exquisitely landscaped lush green patch. This deer park, with spotted deer, peacocks and numerous birds, leads to an incredibly beautiful lake. As per a plaque at the site, the lake is a part of the medieval (13th century) city of Delhi Sultanate. The Hauz Khas (royal lake) was originally built by Alauddin Khilji to supply water to the residents of the capital city, Siri. 

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Hi,

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Rajim kumbh mela has left the Mahanadi river crying for attention.

Around 25 lakh pilgrims across the country took a holy dip in the Mahanadi during the Rajim kumbh festival held in Rajim from January 31-February 13, 2018. For this annual religious extravaganza at the confluence of the Mahanadi, Sondur and Pairi rivers in Chhattisgarh, the state government organised various religious events.

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While millions of people in India still wait for their share of water and toilets, this year's budget fails to give them any hope.

GoI allocations for the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation is Rs. 22,357 crores

For the first time in the last four years, the allocation for the sanitation programme Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) has gone down from Rs 19,248 (RE 2017-18) to Rs 17, 843 crore (2018-2019).

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