Nepalis come together to save Bagmati river - Kathmandu's spiritual lifeline | world | Hindustan Times
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Nepalis come together to save Bagmati river - Kathmandu's spiritual lifeline

Thousands of people living in Kathmandu Valley joined hands on Saturday to clean and protect the Bagmati river, the spiritual lifeline of the Nepal's capital.

world Updated: Apr 11, 2015 12:07 IST
Utpal Parashar
Devotees-take-a-holy-bath-in-the-Bagmati-River-at-the-Pashupatinath-Temple-during-the-month-long-Swasthani-festival-in-Kathmandu-AFP-File-Photo
Devotees-take-a-holy-bath-in-the-Bagmati-River-at-the-Pashupatinath-Temple-during-the-month-long-Swasthani-festival-in-Kathmandu-AFP-File-Photo

Thousands of people living in Kathmandu Valley joined hands on Saturday to clean and protect the Bagmati river, the spiritual lifeline of the Nepal's capital.

Prime Minister Sushil Koirala led over 100,000 residents who had gathered on the banks of the river stretching 28 km from Sundarijal to Chobhar to mark completion of 100 weeks of the campaign to rid the Bagmati of pollution.

"The people have woken up to the task and the government would give full support," Koirala said.

Chairman of ruling Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist) KP Sharma Oli and Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda also took part in the campaign.

"Today's event shows how Nepalis can get united for a cause. The campaign's success will not just clean the Bagmati but can lead to a better Nepal," said Prachanda at the event.

On Saturday, people formed a human chain along both banks and took a pledge to return the river to its pristine glory.

Since the past 100 weeks, residents, celebrities, politicians and government officials have been taking part to clean the river considered holy by Hindus and Buddhists in Nepal.

The river flows near the sacred Pashupati Temple where Hindus cremate dead bodies after dipping them in Bagmati. Like the Ganga in India, water from Bagmati is believed to cleanse people and things.

The river used to be clean till few decades ago, but dumping of human and industrial waste and lack of proper waste management led to pollution. Dumping of garbage led to the river getting clogged at several points.

The Clean Bagmati campaign was launched in May last year to clean the river and beautify its banks.