- Toxic foam resulting from ill-treated sewage clogs the Yamuna amid Chhath festivities.
- The measures adopted by the Delhi Government include a sprinkling of water to evaporate the foam and installing bamboo nets along the stretch
The formation of a toxic lather over the Yamuna river has attracted worldwide criticism. Delhi Government responded to the issue by deploying numerous tactics targeted at clearing the froth. Experts opinionate that the froth is an outcome of untreated or inadequately treated effluents comprising of sewage and industrial waste materials that are released into the water stretch.
Monday witnessed several devotees performing Chhath rituals by taking a dip in the Kalindi Kunj and ITO river ghats irrespective of the ban on festivities along the Yamuna’s riverbank.
An amusingly viral video tossed around Twitter shows an employee of the Delhi Jal Board spraying water with a hose to clear out the foam. He uttered that no alternative short-term measure would be effective. The sprinkling of water will result in breaking the froth enabling the air bubbles trapped in the froth to escape. Consequently the froth would dissipate.
In addition to this, an officer of the Irrigation and Flood Control Department revealed that bamboo nets have been to prevent the froth from floating towards the ghats along Kalindi Kunj. These operations will continue until effectual action is ensured, said the official.
Furthermore, 15 speedboats have been deployed by the Delhi Government to get rid of the foam with the help of ropes. The Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) is working closely with the Irrigation Flood Control Department and Revenue Department to resolve the issue.
Vikas Rai, chairman of the Chhath Puja Samiti, Kalindi Kunj expressed his discontent over the operations being carried out by the Government. He says that the creation of barricades with nets, sprinkling with water and deploying speedboats will not suffice to solve the issue at hand and that the froth will return in no time once all of this is removed.
He added that all of this was just being done to evade criticism and a failed attempt by the Delhi Government at “covering up its failure”.
In the earlier week, the District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) led by L-G Anil Baijal gave consent to the public celebration of Chhath puja at selective locations excluding all areas along the Yamuna banks.
However, this decision was opposed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai said that if the L-G and Delhi Police give the permission, then BJP can perform the festivities along the Yamuna bank.