New Delhi: Groundwater in key Ganga river basin states of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar has residues of different pesticides, the government told the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday.
Quoting a IIT-Delhi study, Minister of Drinking Water and Sanitation Jairam Ramesh said the groundwater in Palla-Burari region near Delhi was found to contain moderately high levels of pesticides - some of them residues of long-banned pesticides such as DDT.
In his written reply, Ramesh said the same team also conducted a larger study on the entire Ganga basin covering Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar and the results showed that different organochloride pesticides predominate in different regions depending upon land use pattern.
"HCH, a bi-product of insecticide Lidane, was detected mostly in mountainous stretch of Uttarakhand. The water in Uttar Pradesh contained more of Endosulfan residues, while the Bihar region contained more of Aldrin group of pesticides," he said.
He said testing of pesticides in water requires precision instrumentation like Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrophotometry (GC-MS), High Pressure Liquid Chromatography (HLC) and also skilled manpower.
To supplement the efforts of the state governments to provide safe drinking water in the rural areas of the country, the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation provides technical and financial assistance under the centrally- sponsored National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP), Ramesh said.