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World Rivers Day highlights sorry state of Indian rivers

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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.

 

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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)

 

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Ganga Jal project in Agra postponed till August

Agra's 20 lakh odd residents are supplied water from two water works. Against the demand for 500 MLD, the supply is hardly 300 MLD. The gap is likely to be met by the new Ganga Jal pipeline which will bring Ganges water to Agra.

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Taj Mahal(Agra), Pixabay

A formal inauguration of the ambitious Rs 3,000 crore Ganga Jal project, to ease water supply situation in the Taj city, has again been postponed – to August.

The 130-km-long pipeline from Bulandshahar’s Palra Jhaal canal of the Ganges was to have been commissioned in November last year.

But it was postponed after the refusal of the UP-Forest Department to chop some trees.

"Agra gets only a trickle. Since there is no storage facility in Agra, the monsoon water goes waste," river activist Harendra Gupta said.
River Ganga. Pixabay

Members of the Central Empowered Committee instituted by the Supreme Court visited the site in March and sought to know how the lost green cover would be compensated. A vacant stretch in Firozabad district has now been identified where plantation work would start next month.

Agra’s 20 lakh odd residents are supplied water from two water works. Against the demand for 500 MLD, the supply is hardly 300 MLD. The gap is likely to be met by the new Ganga Jal pipeline which will bring Ganges water to Agra.

Also Read: Rohingya influx is a threat to common security of the entire region

According to Jal Nigam officials presently submersible pumps, tube wells and hand pumps are meeting the additional demand for water.

Since the Yamuna water is stored in upstream barrages from Hathini Kund, Wazirabad, Okhla to Gokul, what flows in the Yamuna in the name of water is plain industrial effluents and domestic waste plus sewer.

“Agra gets only a trickle. Since there is no storage facility in Agra, the monsoon water goes waste,” river activist Harendra Gupta said. (IANS)

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