Pollution levels in Godavari at scary levels

Before the construction of the Kaleshwaram project, all the waste used to get washed away along with the steady flow of water in the river

Karimnagar: People across religious faiths feel taking a bath in the Godavari is sacred and this would wash away their sins. The flip side is the dumping of waste, the flow of drainage water into the river and discharge of effluents from factories and industries.

The Godavari river is polluted as a result, making its water unsuitable even for irrigation needs.

With the throwing of plastic, photos of gods prepared of glass and cardboard and materials used for prayers including garlands and flowers by the devotees, with the immersion of Ganesh idols made of plaster of paris and chemicals, with mixing of the remains of the dead, the scenario becomes scary.

The flowing in of drainage water from Manthani, Godavarikhani and Dharmapuri towns add to a scenario in which the water from the Godavari is polluted and becoming hazardous.

Before the construction of the Kaleshwaram lift irrigation project (KLIS), all the waste used to get washed away along with the normal, steady flow of water in the Godavari. Now, as the water is remaining stagnant from Medigadda to Yellampalli reservoirs following the construction of KLIS, the pollutants are remaining stuck in the river.

The gates of Medigadda barrage are opened only when there are heavy rains; that too for a few days, due to which large amounts of pollutants are accumulated in Godavari water, posing problems not only for the aquatic life but also to the people using it for irrigation and other needs.

On special occasions and festival times, many devotees from within the state visit the bathing ghats at Kaleshwaram, Manthani, Godavarikhani, Velgatoor and Dharmapuri towns for a holy bath in Godavari river. But due to pollution of water, very few devotees were seen coming in during the Maha Shivarathri on Thursday for a holy dip.

P. Prakash, secretary of the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee, asked: “What is the use of such a massive project, constructed investing crores, when foul smell is emitted from the backwaters of the project? The government is not taking any steps for cleaning the Godavari, he said.

The Congress party Ramagundam assembly segment in-charge, MS Raj Takur alleged that with the negligence of the local MLA and the ruling establishment of the Ramagundam municipal corporation, the sewage and drainage water from various colonies are released directly into the Godavari without any filtering. “Because of this, the water in Godavari is polluted and this is resulting in formation of fog. Consumption of such water will result in several health-related problems,” he said.

There is a need to clean the Godavari using modern technology along with setting up of sewerage treatment plants for filtering of the drainage water released from various towns, he proposed.

Youth Congress leader P. Arun Kumar alleged that the officials are not taking steps for preventing the release of effluents from factories and industries into the Godavari. They must not allow devotees to throw waste and immerse idols along with plastic into the river, he said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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