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The peri-urban to urban groundwater transfer and its societal implications in Chennai, south India – A case study

S. Packialakshmi, N.K Ambujam

Department of Civil Engineering Sathyabama University, Chennai 600 119, Tamil Nadu

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The aquifer of the peri-urban/rural areas of Chennai Metropolitan Area in Tamil Nadu acts as a source of informal water market, and a huge amount of water is transferred and marketed by entrepreneurs, such as private water suppliers and packaged water industries. Water transfer from agricultural to non agricultural uses is not only common in India but most of the water starved developing countries experience it. It leads to temporal and spatial changes in the groundwater quantity and quality, and generates the inequity and affordability issues in accessing the water especially to the peri-urban poor. The paper analyzed the above issue with a case study conducted at Perumbakkam, a Chennai peri-urban village. The multivariate statistical analysis of field findings has been conducted in the peri-urban village for understanding the socio-economic implications of the groundwater market. The study identifies the major findings due to the prevailing informal groundwater market and emphasizes the institutional mechanism through regulatory and legal measures to protect the resource base and conservation and restoration mechanism to replenish the depleting resources. 

Agriculture, Groundwater, Groundwater depletion, Groundwater degradation, Groundwater market, Multivariate statistical analysis, Peri-urban, Socio economic implication.
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