Water Sector in The National Capital Region

Water is an essential component in every aspect of life and must be valued and safeguarded. The NCR is a water scarce region, but can have sufficient water if this resource is conserved and managed properly. This is essential for the sustainable development of the region. The "National Commission on Water for the year 2051" has recommended that water should be considered as a National Asset and should not be treated as ‘State subject’.

NCR is endowed with four perennial rivers namely the Yamuna, Hindon and Kali passing through it and the Ganga skirting its eastern boundary. Main sources of water supply in the region are surface and ground water (e.g. rivers, canals, tubewells, hand pumps and open wells). While the U.P. Sub-region has abundant ground water, the area west of river Yamuna comprising the districts of Gurgaon, Rohtak, Sonepat, Jhajjar and most part of Faridabad district in Haryana, Alwar in Rajasthan and large part of NCT-Delhi have insufficient ground water, which is often brackish in quality rendering it unpalatable for domestic consumption. Delhi draws its water needs mostly from the Yamuna and Western Yamuna canal and partly from Ranney wells and tubewells in Yamuna belt and Upper Ganga canal system. There is generally a wide demand-supply gap of water in NCR and the problem becomes acute in dry summer months.

Regional Plan-2001 proposed norms and standards of water supply in urban area, particularly for the DMA (now CNCR) and Priority towns to be comparable to that of Delhi, with a target of starting the rate of water supply at 225 lpcd and achieving a rate of 363 lpcd by 2001. This norm was also stipulated in Master Plan for Delhi-2001. Rate of water supply was proposed varying from 100 lpcd to 275 lpcd for the other NCR towns of sizes one to five lakhs respectively. Rate of water supply for rural areas was proposed as 70 lpcd (including 30 lpcd for cattle).

Review of Regional Plan-2001, done in the year 1999, observed that the norms and standards for water supply had not been achieved. Even in Delhi, the national Capital, water supply norms could not match the Delhi Master Plan-2001 norms of 363 lpcd and remained on an average at about 225 lpcd. Further, in the NCR the water resources were found to be totally inadequate to meet the demand of even the domestic sector with limited availability of piped water supply. During the summers, water scarcity worsened in the entire region including Delhi. The review also suggested reduction in norms and standards to make them realistic and achievable.

Strategies and Policies (RP 2021)

In order to improve the overall situation in the National Capital Region for the perspective 2021, for the harmonized and balanced development of the region following strategies and policies are proposed:

  • Blueprint for Water Resources in the Region
  • Integrated Regional Schemes for Augmentation of Drinking Water Supply (surface and ground) considering NCR as a Single Entity
  • Protection of Land for Ground Water Recharging:
  • Recharge of Aquifer:
  • Relocation of Water Consuming Industries:
  • Recycling of Waste Water for Non-Drinking Use
  • Creation of Mass Awareness On Saving Water
  • Commercial Approach for Tariff
  • Institutional Capacity Building
  • Allocation of land for Water Treatment Plants and Water Distribution System
  • Funding of Water Supply Schemes through Five-Year Plans

For more information on Water Sector in the NCR, please refer to documents below: