Ganga continues to be polluted with waste water despite tall claims
Despite the Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat’s announcement of stopping the drains falling in Ganga by January 2019, the grim reality has remained unchanged. Till date the work of tapping drains falling into Ganga remains pending. People here are sceptical of whether things would be taken to their logical conclusion in near future. Things continue to be stagnating while the district magistrate avers that things would be completed soon, said a resident of Haridwar. The common refrain that runs among the people here is that the deadlines of December and March are jumping every year with things vegetating indefinitely and the level of pollution of the revered river rising.
Expressing concern over the video which had gone viral of Chandreshwar nala (drain) joining Ganga at Laxman Jhula in Rishikesh, the chief minister had said in his speech in July last that he had instructed the officers concerned to tap the drain. “It is hurting the sentiments of crores of people who come to Haridwar and Rishikesh on pilgrimage,” CM had said.
True, the discharge of Chandreshwar nala into Ganga was stopped. But other drains continue to make their way in the Ganga for years. The Kassaban drain which drains its waste into Ganga in Jwalapur area awaits tapping since long. The sewerage treatment plant under construction for the same was started two years ago, but the work is still going on. Then Union minister for Ganga rejuvenation Uma Bharti had also assured many times of taping of all the drains by the end of 2018. However, reducing such assurances to farce, the waste water continues to drain into the holy river.
Observers say that despite having spent a humungous amount of public money in the name of cleaning Ganga, the government is yet to tap the biggest waste water drain Kassaban. “Over 70 nalas (drains) are draining into the river while the main drains still remain untapped and the funds are going down the drains,” said an observer.
A local resident of Jwalapur Naseem said, “The capacity of the sewage treatment plant is not that much that it can treat the whole volume of water released in the drain. Particularly, during the rainy season when other drains merge the swollen drain sweeps the untreated waste into Ganga.”
Quizzed over the assurances, dished out over the years, remaining elusive, the district magistrate Haridwar Deepak Rawat said, “The work of tapping the waste water drain is going on and many have been tapped so far. But this is not enough till the capacity of STP is appropriately increased. Kassaban nala has been tapped and very soon the work on the sewage treatment plant would be completed. Some would be completed by December this year and the rest would be completed by March next year.”
Thursday, 31 January 2019 | PNS | Haridwar