Need To Evolve Laws In Order To Counter “Groundwater Anarchy”

Sakshi Nigam, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia National Law University, Lucknow. This Article won 2nd position in 4th RostrumLegal Essay Competition, 2016

INTRODUCTION

There is no way that one can envisage a life without water. So it seems ironical when the State guarantees “right to life” without providing “right to water”. It is a known fact that groundwater is the purest form of water and is relied upon by people in India to satiate their thirst.  India has seen evolution of various laws. However, one front at which the country has failed miserably is the water laws, especially groundwater. There are still laws that recognize ownership rights of groundwater. The result of such ownership rights is overexploitation of groundwater. Water under the land they own seems to be a solution for every single necessity of the people who own that land. The resource is tapped for two most important purposes- irrigation and drinking purposes.[i] According to the department of drinking water supply (DDWS), GOI, nearly 90% of the rural water supply currently is sourced from groundwater. Also, it accounts for almost 60% of water use for irrigation purposes.

The caveat is manifested in the form of recent report by NASA which says that groundwater is depleting in India at the fastest rate making it the driest country.[ii] Also, according to the Groundwater Yearbook 2013-14, Government of India, due to the increasing population in the country, the national per capita annual availability of water has reduced from 1,816 cubic metre in 2001 to 1,544 cubic metre in 2011.

The term ‘groundwater anarchy’ is the brainchild of Shah Commission Report. The report described the condition of the groundwater in India by using this terminology. As the title of the essay suggests it is very important to evolve laws in order to tackle the groundwater anarchy that exists in the country. This essay is an attempt to highlight the ways in which this problem has surfaced in the past few years and the insouciant attitude of authorities in this direction.

GROUNDWATER: THE PROBLEMS

The root of the problem is the usage of groundwater for every other purpose. It is believed that the resource is too big to fail. This is indeed erroneous. If proper steps are not taken in proper time, the resource might fail us one day. It is to be noted that in India availability of surface water is more than the ground water, however owing to the decentralized availability of groundwater it is the most used.[iii] As a result of this there is a lot of pressure on groundwater as a resource.

Given is the outline of major problems that the groundwater is dealing with:

(1) Over reliance on one resource:

Groundwater is the source of water that is relied upon abundantly for drinking purposes as well as for the purposes of irrigation. It is to be noted that same aquifer is being tapped for the purposes of irrigation as well as drinking purposes without any coordinated management of resource.[iv] While talking about this aspect it is important to talk about the extent to which groundwater is used.  About 84% of the net irrigated area gets water through groundwater.[v] No decision of growing crop in any area is based on the availability of groundwater. Hence, a crop grown in any area is independent of the amount of water the aquifer of that area holds.

(2) Availability of groundwater:

The manner of distribution of groundwater in various states results in overexploitation of resources in areas where it is in abundance. In the states of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan the groundwater development is more than 100%, on the other hand in the case of Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and Union Territory of Puducherry the groundwater development is above 70%.[vi] Usage of groundwater is hence more in those areas where groundwater is readily available.[vii] This results in an anarchic usage of groundwater. The States which have greater availability of groundwater use them without giving consideration to other resources of water. The disparity in availability of groundwater demands a legislative regulation which is indeed absent in the present scenario.

 (3) Groundwater Usage:

The manner in which groundwater is used is something that needs to be taken into consideration.89% of ground water extracted is used in the irrigation sector, making it the highest category user in the country.[viii]This is followed by ground water for domestic use which is 9% of the extracted groundwater followed by industrial use of ground water which is 2%.[ix] 50% of urban water requirements and 85% of rural domestic water requirements are also fulfilled by ground water.[x] These are the sectors that rely solely on groundwater.

(4) Interconnection of groundwater with other social issues:

The water problems are becoming increasingly more and more interconnected with other development-related issues and also with social, economic, environmental, legal, and political factors at local and national levels and sometimes at regional and even international levels.[xi] This issue stems out from the fact that there is over reliance on groundwater as a resource. There are a slew of sectors that are dependent on groundwater for their survival. Hence, shortage of groundwater affects one but many areas. This gives the problem a much larger magnitude that it might have prima facie. Steps for replenishing the groundwater or regulating the use of groundwater would hence be a step in the direction of development of other sectors as well that are dependent on groundwater for their existence.

MUNDANE LAWS AND THEIR EFFECT ON SOCIETY

The already existing laws in this area are worth mentioning. These help to understand the reasons as to why the resource has come to be perceived in the way in which it is perceived. Historically irrigation laws are the most developed form of water laws in India.[xii] However, the focus over here would be on the laws that regulate groundwater in India.

Laws many a times mold the perception of a society towards a particular resource. This can very well be reflected in the laws for groundwater. It is to be noted that it is the laws that have resulted in linking groundwater with land. Hence, it has resulted in the perception that water below “my” land is “mine”.[xiii] It is here that lies the major flaw. The question as to how this flaw was allowed to be perpetrated can be solved by understanding the evolution of laws.

The evolution in this field can be traced back to the common law. The first case in this respect is that of Chasemore v Richards.[xiv] The question in this case was whether water below the surface can be treated the same way as the water above the surface. The Court made the distinction between rights over the two types of water. This distinction has been carried forward diligently. In the case of Acton v Blundell[xv] the Court enunciated the maxim “To whomsoever the soil belongs he owns also the sky and the depth”. This means that a man can extract as much water as flows below his surface. If in this process there is some damage to the neighboring landowner that would fall under the ambit of “damn sine injuria” meaning damage without any injury to law. Hence, there is no remedy in this scenario.

This has resulted in laying the foundation to the laws relating to the groundwater. It is to be noted that these laws laid down in 19th century and in a country different from India are still being followed in our country. In fact this law is also manifested in the easements act, 1882 in India.  An ‘easement’ is a right that the owner or occupier of certain land possesses, for beneficial enjoyment of that land. Examples of easements are right of way, right to light and air, and right to standing or flowing water not on one’s land. The Easement Act talks about ownership right over groundwater that is present below the ground of the person who possesses it.[xvi] Interpretations of the Transfer of Property Act of 1882 and the Land Acquisition Act of 1894 also support the position that a landowner has proprietary rights to groundwater; it is connected to the ‘dominant heritage’ (land) and cannot be transferred apart from the land.[xvii]

This is how the common law and easement law maneuvered the perspective of the people towards the groundwater. As is evident there are one but many problems that the groundwater law today is grappling with. These problems are the result of the stagnant nature of law that has existed in this realm. The problems include:

(1) Presumption of groundwater to be immoveable property:

The Easement Act treats groundwater as an immoveable property. This approach is highly erroneous. The reason for the same is the scientific fact that the groundwater is always in a state of motion.[xviii] A simple fact that can negate the presumption is that groundwater is an invisible, non-stationary, “fugitive” resource that cannot be limited by the boundaries set up by the landholdings.[xix] It is to be noted that the source of groundwater is aquifers. These aquifers seldom exist in isolation.  It must be remembered that the aquifers provide distinct groundwater typographies in distinct areas.

(2) Private ownership of groundwater :

The consequence of the present law is that landowner can extract groundwater on the basis of availability and discretion.[xx] There is no regulation on the over exploitation of groundwater. Hence, groundwater becomes a resource which is privately owned by individuals.

The presence of “common acquifers” is something that needs to be pressed upon in order to rebut this presumption. Two people having their houses adjacent each other and drilling water do not do so from different acquifers. Hence, it is the same acquifer the two are tapping on and over exploitation by one person may take away the major portion of water that exists in the “common acquifer”.[xxi] As stated above aquifers are connected to each other and this connectivity cuts across land boundaries and administrative divisions.[xxii] Aquifer mapping is one of the most important steps to be taken in the wake of increasing depletion of groundwater. Along with this there needs to be a proper mapping for groundwater availability and groundwater flow system in each hydrological system.[xxiii] This would help in bringing home the fact that private ownership of water is a misconception. This is a mundane law evolved at time when there were not much technological advances made.

(3) Results in social injustice :

Further, this law results in espousing social injustice. The reason is that it fails to account for the rights of landless people over groundwater. “Right to water” is something that is not provided for anywhere in the Constitution explicitly. However, this is something that flows directly from Article 21. In many cases the same has been enunciated by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court has previously held that need for a decent and civilized life includes the right to food, water, and a decent environment.[xxiv]The Supreme Court has pointed out in the case of A.P. Pollution Control Board II v. Prof. M.V. Nayudu[xxv] that:

“Drinking water is of primary importance in any country. In fact, India is a party to the resolution of the UNO passed during the United Nations Water Conference in 1997. Thus, right to access to drinking water is fundamental to life and there is a duty on the State under Article 21 to provide clean drinking water to it’s citizens.”  

Something on the same lines was put forward by the Court in the case of Narmada Bachao Andolan v. Union of India[xxvi], where the Court said that:

“Water is the basic need for the survival of human beings and is part of the right to life and human rights as enshrined in Article 21 of the Constitution of India.”

The National Commission has also recommended in it’s consultation paper of 2002, the insertion of Article 30D which would read as: “Every person shall have the right—(a) to safe drinking water…”.[xxvii] Providing private rights over groundwater would mean that right over purest form of drinking water is guaranteed to only a selected few individuals. More specifically to only those who have land. This would inevitably result in depriving the right of the people with no land. Hence, resulting in a classification on the basis of ownership of land. This in no way is constitutionally valid.

NEED FOR A NATIONAL LAW

It is to be noted that in the Indian Constitution water is the State subject. It can be located in item 17 list II of the Seventh Schedule. Hence, the laws for the same are made by the State Legislative Assemblies. However, with the burgeoning crisis it is important that there is a national law regulating the groundwater. The reasons for same are enunciated below. It is to be noted that these are provided in the twelfth report of Planning Commission.

  1. The right to water being a fundamental part of right to life. The several case laws have been discussed earlier in the essay.
  2. The emergence of water crisis.
  3. The severe pollution and contamination caused to the water.
  4. The equity implications of the distribution, use and control of water between uses, users, areas, sectors, states, countries and generations.
  5. The international dimensions of some of India’s rivers.
  6. The emerging concerns about the impact of climate change on water and the need for appropriate responses at local, national, regional, and global levels.[xxviii]

Apart from the above there are other reasons as well to have a national law for water. The most important reason among them is possibility of inconsistency of laws. While it is acceptable that laws in different states are different, extreme fundamental divergences might cause a problem.[xxix]Secondly, as has been pointed out above water is fundamental to living and if there are national laws for forest, environment etc, there is no plausible reason as to why a national law for water should not be there.[xxx]

There are two most important instances reflecting the intent of the Government to have a national law.

  1. National Water Policy, 2012
  2. Model Bill for Conservation, Protection, Management and Regulation of Groundwater, 2016

A. National Water Policy, 2012

The preamble of national water policy talks about three objectives that it seeks to achieve: (1) to take cognizance of existing situation. (2) to propose a framework for laws  (3) a plan of action with unified national perspective.[xxxi]

This is a broad policy for all forms of water. However, for our discussion over here there are certain limited themes that are to be discussed.

  1. Public trust doctrine: The concept of public trust doctrine ensures that resources meant for public use cannot be converted into private ownership.[xxxii] Government being the trustee has the responsibility to protect and preserve this natural resource for and on behalf of the beneficiaries, that is, the people.[xxxiii] Additionally, they allow every person the fundamental right to be provided water of acceptable quality. This doctrine will inevitably act as a counter to the perception that water under a person’s land is her water. This doctrine if implemented can help a great deal in diffusing the thought that groundwater is a private property. This may indeed call for several amendments in the laws.

It was in consonance with this doctrine that Supreme Court has decreed that the central government is responsible to protect water under Article 21 of the Constitution, which asserts that no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law.[xxxiv] This procedure it is needless to say must be just, fair and reasonable.

  1. Linkage of groundwater with electricity: This one of the most important nexus that has come up. Over extraction of water can be limited by levying tariffs on electricity. However, the policy followed is completely reversed. The farmers are provided subsidized electricity, many states even provide free electricity to the farmers.[xxxv] One more method that can be followed is limiting the number of hours that electricity is provided to the farmers.[xxxvi] Therefore, by scrutinizing the amount of electricity the overexploitation cane be controlled.
  2. Water Pricing: There can be a control on the amount of water used by pricing it. For this purpose the amount of water used must be analyzed and the same must be taxed. This limit of taxation must be revised periodically.
  3. Water as a commodity: There is also a criticism of this policy that has come up. The most resonating criticism is that it is based on pure ideology and there are no objects mentioned that are to be achieved.[xxxvii] In other words, it provides for mere words there is no commitment to reach a particular target or maybe any kind of strategy that might help in achieving the goals. A policy must be designed to reach certain specific quantified target by some clearly stated means and the same objective and means must be feasible as per current state of knowledge.[xxxviii]

B. Model Bill for Conservation, Protection, Management and Regulation of Groundwater, 2016

The model bill provided for by the Government is indeed an exhaustive one. This is the model bill that is laid down in order to provide guidance to the states regarding groundwater laws. An attempt is made to discuss the bedrock principles on which the bill finds support. These are:

  1. Principle of subsidiarity: The principle involves giving communities the power to regulate groundwater at the aquifer level.[xxxix] For example, an aquifer situated entirely within a village will be under the direct control of the Gram Panchayat. This means according to the bill that different measures of conservation of water shall be adopted in different areas depending on the conditions of groundwater in that area.[xl]

The aim of the principle is to promote efficiency and local ownership over policies and regulation, while placing a check on centralized governance and consolidation of authority at the highest levels of government.[xli] This principle is a practical approach towards the problem. It is indeed true that different areas have different ecological conditions. These are best determined by the local players. Therefore, decentralization is a very attractive option for countries with complex watersheds.[xlii] The State would thus bestow upon itself the role of regulator instead of a service provider.[xliii]It is difficult to have a command control system for protection of groundwater. Hence, it is very important that there is a system of cooperation developed amidst the local self-governments and the Government institutions.

  1. Legal status of Groundwater: The model bill is an initiation of giving new legal status to groundwater. In other words it provides for the principle of public trust be implemented in the realm of groundwater. Since, right to water for life is a fundamental right therefore it must be subject to certain reasonable restrictions just like other fundamental rights.[xliv] The bill also provides that the appropriate Government shall take care that a person does not deprive another person of his right to groundwater while exercising his own right, in case they are dependent on same aquifer for groundwater.
  1. Prioritization of Groundwater use: Prioritization of groundwater is one of the features of the bill. It provides that first priority for groundwater is for life followed by allocation for food security, supporting sustainable agriculture and eco-system needs.[xlv] Other needs would be determined according to the local needs. However, these uses must be consistent with the objective of sustaining aquifers.[xlvi]
  1. Groundwater Protection zones: The bill provides for demarcation and regulation of Groundwater protection zones. These zones are demarcated with an objective to protect those areas that suffer from loss of water as well as those areas under the threat of contamination.[xlvii]
  1. Other important provisions: There are other important provisions that need to be taken into consideration. Some of them are enlisted below:
  2. a) Providing for minimum quantity of water for life to be supplied from groundwater.[xlviii]
  3. b) Establishment of a Gram Panchayat Groundwater Sub- Committee in rural areas and a ward committee in urban areas.[xlix]
  4. c) Apart from this there is also a provision for establishment of District Groundwater Council and State Groundwater Advisory Council.[l]
  5. d) An authorization needs to be there by an appropriate Government in cases where water is being extracted for industrial purposes or infrastructure projects.[li] Additional tax shall be levied in cases where groundwater is being used in bulk.[lii]
  6. e) Drilling agencies must be registered with the District Groundwater Council and these must provide appropriate Government with full details of drilling activities.[liii]
  7. f) There is a provision for penalty as well. The model bill provides that anyone whose activities result in affecting the quality of groundwater or quantity of groundwater shall be punished with imprisonment that may extend to 1 year and 6 months or fine which may extend to 1 lakh rupees or more.

STEPS ALREADY TAKEN

It would be erroneous to say that no State Government has taken steps in order to counter this problem. Certain steps have been taken and some are yet to be taken.

A. Steps taken by state governments

In response to the Model Bill, so far, 11 states and four union territories (UTs) have adopted and implemented ground water legislation, these are: Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, West Bengal, Telangana, Maharashtra, Lakshadweep, Puducherry, Chandigarh and Dadra & Nagar Haveli.[liv]

There are certain similarities in laws enforced in several states. These similarities are: (1) the fixation of the depth of wells, bore wells or tube wells and; (2) declaration of groundwater conservation and protection zones.[lv] The legislation amidst these that should be taken into consideration is the Himachal Pradesh (Regulation and Control of Development and Management) Act, 2005. This act provides for two provisions that are worth to be noted. Firstly, the act provides for a provision of royalty at such rates as prescribed.[lvi] Secondly, the authorities would identify the areas of groundwater recharge and issue guidelines for rain water harvesting.[lvii] None of the bills have however attempted to make any groundbreaking change. There are steps taken but given the condition of groundwater, it is important that much more radical steps are taken.

B. OTHER STEPS THAT CAN BE TAKEN

As has been discussed above agriculture is one of the areas where the groundwater is being exploited to a great extent. India uses almost twice the amount of water for crops as is used in United States and China.[lviii] In order to see that limited quantity of water is being used in agriculture, there are certain steps that should be taken. These include as has been recommended by the Commission on Price Policy for Kharif Crops (2015-16), that quantitative ceilings be fixed on per hectare use of water and electricity.[lix] Also, the farmers should be rewarded with incentives in cases they use water and electricity below the ceiling prescribed.[lx]

A much easier way to evolve a convinced society towards the problem is water education. It is very important that efforts are made for dissemination of information regarding depletion and misuse of groundwater.[lxi] One of the measures for companies which use water can be water foot prints. It can be made mandatory for the companies to give in their annual report the details of the water footprint for the year.[lxii] On the basis of these foot prints measures should be taken against or for the industries. Also, it must be seen that groundwater is not used as a remedy for every use of water. An attempt must be made to exhaust other resources before jumping on this depleting resource.

CONCLUSION

There is no doubt that steps are being taken to regulate groundwater. However, the magnitude of the steps in the face of urgency is a problem worth pondering. There are myriad steps suggested by the Government in the form of the model bill. These steps would indeed require a lot of mechanism in place. If it is not practical to implement all these steps all of a sudden, the writer has here tried to come up with few steps that should be necessarily implemented.

The need of the hour is at least some minimal solid steps taken in the direction. There is a need that groundwater is declared as a common pool resource. This is very important in the wake of implementation of public trust doctrine. Also, by various judgments that are passed by the Supreme Court making right to water as a part of fundamental right to life. The above amendment would be the most plausible solution at hand. This would help in clearing the inconsistency that remains in this realm of groundwater law. This would also result in removing an inequality that flows directly from the old, mundane laws.

Aquifer mapping is one of the basic techniques that States must equip itself with. This technique will help in implementing the policies in the long run and also act as a reliable source of facts. Further, there is a need to have a strong local mechanism in place for groundwater which is supported by policies in the Centre. This mean that local mechanism for conservation of water would indeed be different, but the policies that drive these mechanisms must be same and one at the central level. For example if the Centre adopts the policy that it will act as a regulator and not as a facilitator of groundwater. In that case at the local level steps that are taken can be distinct must they must be in accordance with the same policy. This is also one of the reasons for stressing on the need for a national law.

It is high time now that we start taking this problem seriously. Before it becomes a menace for the society, there should be laws made to regulate this. In the end it is possible to at least not end but limit this groundwater anarchy that exists today. The need is just that the Government takes proper measures and gives importance to the problem.

References:

[i]Mihir Shah, Water:Towards a Paradigm Shift in the Twelfth Plan, 48(3) Economic and Political Weekly 40, 52 (2013), available at https://www.indiawaterportal.org/sites/indiawaterportal.org/files/water_ towards_ a _ paradigm _ shift_in_the_twelfth_plan_dr_mihir_shah_planning_commission.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[ii]Groundwater water in India world worst hit in the world: NASA, Deccan Herald, (18/06/2015), available at https://www.deccanherald.com/content/484290/groundwater-depletion-india-worst-world.html, last seen on 08/12/2016.

[iii]Rupal sohag, Overview of Groundwater in India, PRS India, available at https://www.prsindia.org/administrator

/uploads/general/1455682937~~Overview%20of%20Ground%20Water%20in%20India.pdf, last seen on 16/12/2016.

[iv]Supra 1.

[v]Supra 3.

[vi]Mihir Shah, Water:Towards a Paradigm Shift in the Twelfth Plan, 48(3) Economic and Political Weekly 40, 50 (2013), available at https://www.indiawaterportal.org/sites/indiawaterportal.org/files/water_ towards_ a _ paradigm _ shift_in_the_twelfth_plan_dr_mihir_shah_planning_commission.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[vii]Mihir Shah, Water: Towards a Paradigm Shift in the Twelfth Plan, 48(3) Economic and Political Weekly 40, 50 (2013), available at https://www.indiawaterportal.org/sites/indiawaterportal.org/files/water_towads_a_paradigm _shift_in_the_twelfth_plan_dr_mihir_shah_planning_commission.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[viii]Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Government of India, Annual Report 2013-14, available at https://wrmin.nic.in/writereaddata/AR_2013-14.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[ix]Ibid.

[x]Ibid.

[xi]A.K. Biswas, Integrated Water Resources Management:A Reassessment a Water Forum Contribution, 29(2) International Water Resources Association 248, 251 (2004), available at https://www.tonydorcey.ca/597/Posts /IWRM%20for%20Water%20International.6.pdf, last seen on 18/12/2016.

[xii]Philippe Cullet, Water Law in India: Overview of existing framework and reforms, International Environment law Centre Working Paper, available at  https://www.ielrc.org/content/w0701.pdf, last seen on 18/12/2016.

[xiii]Mihir Shah, Water:Towards a Paradigm Shift in the Twelfth Plan, 48(3) Economic and Political Weekly 40, 50 (2013), available at https://www.indiawaterportal.org/sites/indiawaterportal.org/files/water_ towards_ a _ paradigm _ shift_in_the_twelfth_plan_dr_mihir_shah_planning_commission.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[xiv]Chasmore v. Richards, 7 HLC 349, 351 (1859, House of Lords).

[xv]Acton v. Blundell, 152 Eng. Rep. 1233, 1235 (1843, Court of Exchequer Chamber).

[xvi]S. 7, Easement act, 1882.

[xvii]Supra 12.

[xviii]T.N. Narsimbhan, Groundwater Management and Ownership, 43(7) Economic and Political Weekly 21, 25 (2008), available at https://www.epw.in/journal/2008/07/commentary/groundwater-management-and-ownership.html, last seen on 18/12/2016.  

[xix]Mihir Shah, Water:Towards a Paradigm Shift in the Twelfth Plan, 48(3) Economic and Political Weekly 40, 50 (2013), available at https://www.indiawaterportal.org/sites/indiawaterportal.org/files/water_ towards_ a _ paradigm _ shift_in_the_twelfth_plan_dr_mihir_shah_planning_commission.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[xx]Sujith Koonan, Revamping the Groundwater legal Regime in India, International Environment law Centre Working Paper, available at https://www.ielrc.org/content/a1602.pdf, last seen on 18/12/2016.

[xxi]Mihir Shah, Water:Towards a Paradigm Shift in the Twelfth Plan, 48(3) Economic and Political Weekly 40, 50 (2013), available at https://www.indiawaterportal.org/sites/indiawaterportal.org/files/water_ towards_ a _ paradigm _ shift_in_the_twelfth_plan_dr_mihir_shah_planning_commission.pdf, last seen 15/12/2016.

[xxii]H. Kulkarni, Mihir Shah & P.S.V. Shankar, Shaping the Contours of Groundwater Governance in India, 4  Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies, 173, 179 (2015), available at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S221

4581814000469, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[xxiii]Ibid, at 181.

[xxiv]Chameli Singh v. State of UP, AIR 1996 SC 1051.

[xxv]A.P. Pollution Control Board II v. Prof. M.V. Nayudu, (2001) 2 SCC 62.

[xxvi]Narmada Bachao Andolan v. Union of India, (2000) 10 SCC 664.

[xxvii]Videh Upadhyay, Water Rights and the ‘New’ Water Laws in India, India Infrastructure Report 2011, available at

https://www.idfc.com/pdf/report/2011/Chp-5-Water-Rights-And-The-New-Water-Laws-In-India.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[xxviii]Planning Commission, Government of India, Twelfth five year plan (2012-2017), available at https://planningcommission.gov.in/plans/planrel/12thplan/pdf/12fyp_vol3.pdf, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[xxix]R.R. Iyer, Why National Water Framework Law, The Hindu (07/01/2013), available at file:///C:/Users/hp/Desktop/

water%20managment/Why%20a%20national%20water%20framework%20law%20-%20The%20Hindu.html, last seen on 15/12/2016.

[xxx]Ibid.

[xxxi]Ministry of water resources, Government of India, National Water Policy 2012, available at https://wrmin.nic.in/

writereaddata/NationalWaterPolicy/NWP2012Eng6495132651.pdf, last seen on 16/12/2016.

[xxxii]The Model Bill for the Conservation, Protection and Regulation of Groundwater, 2011(draft bill, 2011).

[xxxiii]Chhatrapati Singh, Water Rights and Principles of Water Resource Management, 90 (1st ed., 1991).

[xxxiv]T.N. Narsimbhan, Groundwater Management and Ownership, 43(7) Economic and Political Weekly 21, 24 (2008), available at https://www.epw.in/journal/2008/07/commentary/groundwater-management-and-ownership.html, last seen 18/12/2016.

[xxxv]R.R.Iyer, National Water Policy: An Alternative Draft for consideration, 46(26&27) Economic and Political Weekly 201, 203 (2011), available at https://www.ctara.iitb.ac.in/ water /references /epw/epwRRonNWP.pdf, last seen 18/12/2016.

[xxxvi]Ibid.

[xxxvii]Chetan Pandit, Alternative national Water Policy: A Critique, 46(37) Economic and Political Weekly 77, 79 (2011), available at https://www.epw.in/journal/2011/37/discussion/alternative-national-water-policy-critique.html, last seen 18/12/2016.

[xxxviii]Ibid.

[xxxix]The Model Bill for the Conservation, Protection and Regulation of Groundwater, 2011 (draft bill, 2011).

[xl]The Model Bill for Conservation, Protection and Regulation of Groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[xli]Ryan Stoa, Subsidiarity in Principle: Decentralization of Water Resources Management, 10(2) Utretch Law review 31, 33 (2014) available at https://www.utrechtlawreview.org/articles/10.18352/ulr.267, last seen 18/12/2016.

[xlii]Ibid.

[xliii]Supra 36.

[xliv]S. 9, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[xlv]S. 10, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[xlvi]Ibid.

[xlvii]S. 11, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[xlviii]S. 14, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[xlix]S. 13 & S. 14, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[l]S. 15, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[li]S. 20, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[lii]S. 21, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[liii]S. 35, The model bill for conservation, protection and regulation of groundwater, 2016 (draft bill, May 2016).

[liv]Supra 30.

[lv]Supra 28.

[lvi]S. 12, The Himachal Pradesh (Regulation and Control of Development and Management) Act, 2005.

[lvii]S. 15, The Himachal Pradesh (Regulation and Control of Development and Management) Act, 2005.

[lviii]Supra 3.

[lix]Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, Price Policy for Kharif Crops- the Marketing Season 2015-16, March 2015,available at https://cacp.dacnet.nic.in/ViewReports.aspx?Input=2&PageId=39&KeyId=54, last seen on 17/12/2016.

[lx]Supra 27.

[lxi]Supra 18, at 23.

[lxii]Supra 19, at 42.

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