About Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974
- Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 is a comprehensive legislation that regulates agencies responsible for checking on water pollution and the ambit of pollution control boards both at the centre and states.
- The Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 was adopted by the Indian parliament with the aim of prevention and control of Water Pollution in India.
The salient features of Water (Prevention And Control Of Pollution) Act, 1974
- Water Act 1974 aims to prevent and control water pollution.
- The Act provides for maintenance and restoration of quality of all types of surface and groundwater.
- It provides for the establishment of Central and State Boards for pollution control. The Act assigns powers and functions to these Boards to control pollution.
- The Central and State Pollution Control Boards are given comprehensive powers to advise, coordinate, and provide technical assistance for the prevention and control of water pollution.
- The Act has provisions for funds, budgets, accounts, and audit of the Central and State Pollution Control Boards.
- Under Water Act 1974, Sewage or pollutants cannot be discharged into water bodies including lakes and it is the duty of the state pollution control board to intervene and stop such activity.
- The Act prohibits disposal of any poisonous, noxious or polluting matter to the flow of water in a stream. However, dumping of any material into a stream for the purpose of reclamation of land is not considered an offense.
- The Act provides for severe and deterrent punishments for violation of the Act which includes fine and imprisonment. Anyone failing to abide by the laws of under is liable for imprisonment under Section 24 & Section 43 ranging from not less than one year and six months to six years along with monetary fines.
- One of the important provisions of the Water Act, 1974 is to maintain and restore the ‘wholesomeness’ of our aquatic resources.
The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act of 1977
- Passed to generate financial resources to meet expenses of the Central and State Pollution Boards.
- Creates economic incentives for pollution control and requires local authorities and certain designated industries to pay a cess (tax) for water effluent discharge.
- The Central Government, after deducting the expenses of collection, pays the central board and the states such sums, as it seems necessary.
- To encourage capital investment in pollution control, the Act gives a polluter a 70% rebate of the applicable cess upon installing effluent treatment equipment.
- The cess and the consent fees from the major sources of revenue to run the Central and State Water Boards.
- The Act has been amended in 1991 to provide rebates to the industries for complying with the consumption and effluent quality standard.