[ RadSafe ] Underground water in Varanasi

Dan W McCarn hotgreenchile at gmail.com
Sun Jul 13 13:34:18 CDT 2008

Dan W. McCarn, Geologist; 3118 Pebble Lake Drive; Sugar Land, TX 77479; USA 
HotGreenChile at gmail.com   mccarn at unileoben.ac.at   UConcentrate at gmail.com

Hi - Perhaps Parthasarathy can comment on this: Is the maximum contaminant
level (MCL) for uranium really only 1.5 ug/L in India?  If so, this is
certainly not in line with EU or US EPA values.

Dan ii


The Hindu
Sunday, July 13, 2008 : 1600 Hrs 
'Underground water in Varanasi contaminated with Uranium'
Varanasi (PTI): In an alarming development, a group of scientists has
revealed that underground water in Varanasi and adjoining areas is
contaminated with Uranium but the Centre and the state government are
unaware of the fact.
The study conducted by G C Chowdhary, former Professor at the Geology
Department of Banaras Hindu University and S K Agarwal, also a professor of
Geology, has shown that the drinking water in the University premises some
other places in the city contains radioactive Uranium more than the
recommended limit. 

Samples for the study were collected from 11 tubewells tapping deep aquifers
(more than 100 meters deep). 

The Uranium content varied from 2 to 11 ppb (parts per billion) while the
permissible limit is only 1.5 ppb. 

Chowdhary said the underground water also contains heavy metals such as
Chromium, Manganese, Nickel, Ferrous, Copper, Zinc and Lead. 

He said they had also published their first research paper in this regard in
the Hydrology Journal of Indian Association of Hydrology in 1990s, clearly
predicting health hazardous of water contaminated with these elements beyond
the permissible limit. 

Member Secretary of the UP Pollution Control Board, CS Bhatt, told PTI on
phone that he had not come across any report, which suggests that the
underground water in Varanasi is contaminated with any sort of radioactive

There is no facility with the board to investigate any such occurrences even
if it comes to its knowledge, he said. 

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