World Rivers Day highlights sorry state of Indian rivers


By NewsGram Staff Writer

Agra/Mathura: With people of Braj Mandal expressing solidarity with millions around the world to highlight environmental degradation and pollution in rivers, the maladies of the Indian rivers including Yamuna which have cradled life and culture for eons, came into the fore on the World Rivers Day on Sunday.

World Rivers Day, a celebration of the contribution of the rivers in human life, highlights the many values of rivers and strives to increase public awareness and encourages the improved stewardship of rivers around the world.

Activists in Agra, Mathura and Vrindavan celebrated the day by holding a plethora of programmes including group discussions, visits to the river and rallies.

Anand Rai, an ex-NASA scientist, irked over the atrocious condition of rivers, and said, “pathetic is the condition of the river which has been reduced to a sewage canal.”

Coinciding with the Ganesh idol immersion ceremonies at the Yamuna ghats in Agra, Mathura and Vrindavan, environmentalists pointed out the failure of the administration to prevent pollution of the river.

“Though the local authorities had dug up pits for immersion, many devotees bypassed the law and moved to obscure places to immerse the idols in Yamuna,” regretted river activist Shravan Kumar Singh.

At a discussion organised by ‘Braj Mandal Heritage Conservation Society’, speakers highlighted the grave threat a dry Yamuna posed to the 17th century monument of love, the Taj Mahal. The society’s president Surendra Sharma said: “Even before the monsoon officially withdraws, the Yamuna is already dry in the Taj city, which is facing an acute water crisis.”

(With inputs from IANS)