Ghaziabad, Feb. 13 -- The Uttar Pradesh cabinet has approved the UP Groundwater (Management and Regulation) Rules - 2020, to protect and regulate the usage of groundwater after the water table dipped to alarming levels in the state, which currently has 82 overexploited, 47 critical and 151 semi-critical blocks.

The rules provide for formation of regulatory mechanisms at the state, district, block/village and municipal level. Officials of UP groundwater department said, the rules were formed after government notified UP Groundwater (Management & Regulation) Act, 2019, and it came into force on October 2, 2019.

"Earlier, there was no mechanism whereby we could impose fines, levy penalties or crack down on illegal extraction of groundwater. ...