National Human Rights Commissiontoday issued notices to Punjab and Haryana governments over reports of heavy pollution in Ghaggar river which passes through the two states.
The notices were served after the Commission took cognisance of a media report that the river water has over past several years become polluted.
"Twenty villages in Mansa district of Punjab, situated alongside the Ghaggar, are witness to the water changing its colour from blue to black which makes tough for anybody to even stand near the river, let alone using it for irrigation or drinking purposes," an NHRC statement said.
The main cause of the pollution is stated to be effluents being released into the river by factories upstream in various parts of Punjab and Haryana.
The Commission has observed that the contents of the media report, if true, raise serious issues of violation of right to pollution-free environment of the residents of the area. It has issued notices to the Chief Secretaries of Governments of Punjab and Haryana calling for a report within two weeks.
The Chairman of Punjab Pollution Control Board has maintained that it was an inter-state issue and that there was zero pollution from Punjab.