19 August :The problem of pollution of National Water Resources has become a matter of serious concern in view of the multiplicity of agencies involved in water management in the country and with no virtual coordination. ‘Water Quality Assessment Authority (WQAA) was constituted in May 2001 to circumvent the situation’.
The Secretariat of the Water Quality Assessment Authority is situated in the Ministry of Water Resources. The Water Quality Review Committees (WQMC) have been constituted in the States with an objective to improve quality of water resources, review Quality Data Analysis and Interpretation in order to identify problem areas and developing action plan for improving quality on a sustainable basis. These Committees also identify hot spots for surveillance, monitoring and to look into other specific miscellaneous issues related to water quality arising from time to time.
A Gazette Notification on the Uniform Monitoring Protocol by all the Water Quality Monitoring Agencies has been made in June 2005 based on the recommendations of the Expert Committee and Task Force. Water Quality Assessment Authority also constituted a working group to deal with issues related to minimum flows in riverine systems. The 6th Meeting of the WQAA held on 23rd May 2008 discussed the draft report of the working group and decided that the group needs to carry out some more studies and needs to take into consideration any court directions, which are in force and where its non-implementation would create legal problems.
Water Quality Monitoring Committee (WQMC) was also constituted to assist the WQAA in its functions in accordance with the decisions of WQAA. Ten Meetings of WQMC have been held so far. The status of the progress made by WQAA and WQMC and the guidelines were finalized/approved during the 6th Meeting of WQAA for preparation of Water Quality Management Plans by various State Governments.
National level and Regional Level Workshops have been organized in order to make ‘State Water Quality Review Committees’ more effective and to establish coordination among various agencies in the field of Water Quality Monitoring.