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04-05 04. Earth System Science











Central Ground Water Board, KR, Kedaram, Trivandrum Central Ground Water Board, WR, Jhalana doongri, Jaipur ABSTRACT ________________________________________________________________________ Fluoride is a common geogenic contaminant of drinking water and its effects on human health have been extensively studied. The present work is an attempt to assess the geochemical sources of dissolved fluoride in groundwater and its distribution in parts of Jaipur district, Rajasthan State (NW India). Analytical results revealed that the groundwater in the study area is highly mineralized with high concentration of fluoride ranging from 0.35 mg/l to 14 mg/l and poses a serious threat to groundwater quality particularly in shallow aquifers. Presence of fluoride bearing minerals in the host rock and their interaction with water and chemical weathering under arid to semiarid conditions with relatively high alkalinity favours high concentration of fluoride in groundwater.

1. Introduction India is among 23 nations around the globe, where health problems occur due to the consumption of fluoride contaminated water. Rajasthan State in northwest India is unique as all the 32 districts have been reported to have variable fluoride contamination, however the fluoride abundance levels are generally controlled by local geological setting and hydrogeological regime. In view of its significance, a detailed hydrogeological investigation in parts of Jaipur district in central Rajasthan have been carried out with a focus on high fluoride occurrence and distribution in groundwater and its relation to geological setting. The study area comprising of Dudu, Phagi and Sambhar blocks of Jaipur district occupies an area of 4263 Km2, and is located between 26025: 27030 north latitude and 74055: 75045 east longitude.

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Hydrogeologically, the major part of the study area is occupied by gneiss, schist, granite, quartzite, phyllite, and limestone belonging to Bhilwara and Delhi Supergroup of rocks of Archaean to Proterozoic age. Quaternary and Recent alluvium forms good aquifers in parts of Jaipur district. 2. Materials and Methods Block wise ground water samples from dug wells, shallow hand pumps and deep tube wells were collected during May (pre-monsoon), 2005 and were analyzed at the chemical lab of Central Ground Water Board, Western region, Jaipur, Rajasthan for pH, Electrical conductivity (EC), Total hardness (TH), standard anions, cations and fluoride. 3. Results and Conclusions Hydrochemical data of the study area were compared with the drinking water standards of Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS 1991) and World Health Organization (WHO, 1984) for evaluation of water quality. Analysis suggests that majority of ionic and non-ionic constituents are falling within desirable limit except fluoride. The analytical results of the samples collected from the study area indicate that the groundwater is generally alkaline in nature. Fluoride concentration in shallow aquifer samples in parts of Jaipur district ranges between 0.35 to 14 mg/l whereas deeper aquifer samples show lower values (0.7 to 9.3 mg/l). Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS, 1991) and World Health Organization (WHO, 1984) recommend 1.0 mg/l as the desirable limit and 1.5 mg/l as the maximum permissible limit. 32% of open wells and 67% of bore well samples record F concentration values within the maximum permissible limit. Whereas 68% of open wells and 33% of bore well samples recorded fluoride concentration values beyond the maximum permissible limit.

Fig 1. Spatial distribution map of Fluoride in parts of Jaipur district.

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A perusal of fluoride map (Fig.1) during pre-monsoon in parts of Jaipur district shows that F concentration below the maximum permissible limit is observed as stretched and isolated pockets throughout the entire study area. It occurs to the southeast and southwest of Phagi block. Small, isolated pockets of such concentration lie to the north and central portions of Dudu block bordering Sambhar lake and to the southwest and northeast of Sambhar block. Such waters are considered to be safe for drinking purpose. F concentration values ranging between 1.5 mg/l and 3.0 mg/l cover major areas of Dudu block. Such concentration also occurs towards the southwest, northwest and southern part of Phagi block and to the southwest, south and western portions of Sambhar block. F concentration values lying above 3.0 mg/l cover major areas of the study area especially Phagi and Sambhar block. Use of such highly problematic waters for drinking purpose may cause serious health hazards including skeletal fluorosis (Vikas, 2005).

Fluoride incidence in groundwater is mainly a natural phenomenon influenced basically by the local and regional geological setting and hydrogeological conditions. Main rock formations of the water sampling locations are Schist, Gneiss, Phyllite, Granite, Quartzite and Alluvial formations. Most of the sampling locations are from aquifers in the unconfined/ semi confined conditions, in general, in weathered and fractured zones. It seems more appropriate that rocks rich in fluoride minerals have contributed to the enriched fluoride content of groundwater during the course of weathering of rock types. Areas with semi-arid climate, crystalline rocks and alkaline soils are mostly affected (Handa, 1975). The major fluoride bearing minerals present in the rocks are Fluorapatite, Fluorite, Sepiolite, Palygorskite, Cryolite, Muscovite, Biotite, Hornblende, Asbestos etc. Among these, the most important being the fluorite, sepiolite as well as palygorskite and the leaching of fluoride from the metamorphic rocks like granite gneiss and schist of Proterozoic age. Fluoride gives statistically significant positive correlation with HCO3 as well as Na and negative correlation with Ca in groundwater samples of the study area. Coupled with high Na content, these correlations reveal that weathering is the major source of fluoride in groundwater. In general, relatively high pH conditions have a tendency to displace fluoride ions from the mineral surface (Madhavan and Subramanian, 2003). From the above, it is obvious that relatively high alkalinity favours high concentration of fluoride in groundwater of the study area. The arid climate with low rainfall and high evapotranspiration and insignificant natural recharge favors salinisation of groundwater resulting in the precipitation of calcite. Soils become more alkaline with very high pH limit the solubility of calcite. These conditions allow fluoride to concentrate in the groundwater environment (Vikas, 2005). Fluoride concentration in excess of permissible limit in drinking water causes dental and skeletal fluorosis in the study area.

4. References 1. BIS. (1991). Drinking water specifications: (First revision), IS: 10500: 1991. 2. Handa, B.K. (1975).Geochemistry and genesis of fluoride containing groundwater in India, Groundwater, 13, 275-281. 3. Madhavan, N. and Subramanian, V.(2003). The fluoride problem in Ajmer district, Rajasthan. In: A.L. Ramanathan and R. Ramesh (eds.) Recent Trends in Hydrogeochemistry (Case Studies from Surface and Subsurface Waters of Selected Countries), Capital Publishing Co, New Delhi, 296 p. 4. Susheela, A. K. (1999). Fluorosis management programme in India, Curr.Sci, 77(10), 1250 1256. 5. Vikas, C; Kushwaha, R.K; Shahajpal P.K. and Ahmed W. (2005). Fluoride in Ground water of Ajmer district, Rajasthan - An Arid Environment, Bhu-Jal News, Rajasthan special issue, 20(3-4), 66 74. 6. WHO. (1984).Guidelines for drinking water quality, Values 3, Drinking water quality community supplies, Geneva, 212p. control in small

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