Water Management – Institutional Reforms, Conservation Efforts, etc.

[pib] Law for Rain Water Harvesting


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Law for Rain Water Harvesting

Mains level: Rooftop water conservation strategy



The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs has issued the Model Building Bye Laws, 2016 for guidance of the States/UTs and has a chapter on ‘Rainwater Harvesting’.

Why such move?

  • These laws aim to regulate the over-exploitation and consequent depletion of ground water.
  • It would enable States/UTs to enact suitable ground water legislation for regulation of its development, which includes provision of rain water harvesting.

About the Bye Laws

  • 33 States/UTs have adopted the rainwater harvesting provisions.
  • The provisions of this chapter are applicable to all the buildings.

Various provisions

  • As per Model Building Bye Laws- 2016, provision of rainwater harvesting is applicable to all residential plots above 100 sq.m.
  • Water being a State subject, initiatives on water management including conservation and water harvesting in the Country is primarily States’ responsibility.
  • So the implementation of the rainwater harvesting policy comes within the purview of the State Government/Urban Local Body / Urban Development Authority.


Groundwater governance in India

  • Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) has been constituted under Section 3(3) of the ‘Environment (Protection) Act, 1986’ for the purpose of regulation and control of groundwater development and management in the Country.
  • CGWA is regulating ground water withdrawal by industries/infrastructure/ mining projects in the country for which guidelines/ criteria have been framed which includes rainwater harvesting as one of the provisions while issuing No Objection Certificate.

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