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WaterLab Solutions introduces ‘Bhujal’ – An App recognized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer

Updated: Jul 19, 2023

Original Story by : Narasimha Raju

Jul. 10, 2023 at 4:06 pm

It is the first of its kind application to monitor groundwater levels without dismantling the borewells and manage sources ~ Borewells remain a major source of groundwater for all purposes in India. As they are concealed, it is difficult to know how much water they are holding. In the absence of this knowledge, water is being abstracted relentlessly with continuous pumping until the borewells go dry. Lack of groundwater knowledge has resulted in inefficient management of borewells and inefficient use of available water.

In 2022, Waterlabs Solution founded by Vijay Gawade created a simple android-based application – ‘Bhujal’ to empower and educate individuals to know water availability in borewells. Based on the principle “what needs to be managed, needs to be measured”, the Bhujal Borewell Monitoring App (Bhujal) is the first of its kind and provides a simple solution for tracking water levels in borewells. The App is patented now. Bhujal is a user-friendly, android-based Multilingual App that is easily available, simple to use, and does not require any sensors/supporting tools or/equipment. The App also does not require opening the borewell assembly making it the most convenient tool available today for groundwater monitoring. This App helps in determining water levels in a borewell in an accurate manner in less than a minute. Bhujal is a powerful demand-side solution to manage borewells for individuals, groups of farmers, communities, institutions, businesses, and industries. The Bhujal App has been tested and validated by the Centre for Water Resources Development and Management (CWRDM – Kozhikode), jointly tested with Central Ground Water Board, Government of India, IIT Mumbai, ACWADAM(Pune), State ground agencies of Maharashtra and Karnataka and various other organizations in India for its accuracy.

The Bhujal App is a grant funded by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India, and it has also been selected as one of the Innovative Apps in the Agri Conclave inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Waterlab has been chosen as a technology and implementation partner by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India for the Amrut 2 Mission which targets nearly 5oo cities in India. The app is being used to monitor 300 borewells in the Pune Municipal Corporation area for developing an aquifer management plan, with funding support from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs under the Amrut 2 Mission. The App is also being used to monitor drinking water borewells for Grampanchayats by Aga Khan Rural Support Programme in Bihar. It is now planned to be used for monitoring irrigation borewells in a pilot in Haryana where first-of-its-kind community-based data-driven management of groundwater resources will be initiated with Human for People -a Danish international NGO. The App is also being used by ACWADAM- a renowned organization working on groundwater issues in India for research purposes across thousands of borewells in urban and rural areas.

At present over 1800 borewells are being monitored using the Bhujal App and in 2023, the numbers are likely to cross 5000 borewells indicating a growth of 270%. The current market provides only limited tools such as sounders, piezometers, and Digital water level recorders for groundwater monitoring which are expensive, invasive in their use, non-scalable, and pose constraints in using them in a borewell with the pump inside. Domestic, Agriculture, industrial, and government-led groundwater monitoring are the potential areas of emerging business for Bhujal App.

The Bhujal App is available for monitoring by individuals as well as for groundwater monitoring services for governments, NGOs, CSR Donors, and researchers. An IoT device is also being readied for remote monitoring of borewells required by progressive clients, Governments, and Industries.

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