November 30, 2021 - 9:45 am

Toxic Foam Covers Sacred River 

One of India's holiest rivers - the Yamuna is coated with toxic foam, adding to the woes of New Delhi residents already enduring a blanket of thick smog over the capital. it has become a repeat occurrence in the city despite governments repeated warning and ban on Chhath celebrations several Hindu worshippers didn't stop taking a dip in a frothing Yamuna to mark Chhath Puja, a four day festival to offer prayers to the sun. 

                         Formation of foth or foam in rivers is very common. However, here, the froth is a sign of polluted river. Untreated sewage may contain high levels of phosphates (used in many detergents) which remain in water and are responsible for alarming amounts of foam in the river. Presence of untreated industrial effluents, organic matter from decomposing vegetation, pollutants from industries on the bank of river also contribute to the foam.

                              After formation of foam in July 2020, the now disbanded Yamuna Monitoring Committee had asked the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) and the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to inspect and submit reports on the matte. The CPCB report submitted in August last year notes that foam formation takes place at two locations downstream of the ITO and Okla. barrages. In June this year, the DPCC banned the sale, storage and transportation of soaps and detergents not conforming to the quality standards set by the Bureau of Indian Standard (BIS).

                              War of words is being taking place among political gamut instead indispensable measures to be adopted for cleaning river. There should be collective responsibilities to handle the situation and attention pass be to upgrade sewage treatment plants, remove the froth and also direction allowing the public celebration of Chhath Puja at designated areas, which exclude any site on the banks of the Yamuna. corrective measures are to be maneuvered  to help the river rejuvenated.