6 tonne fish found dead in 2 Fazilka villages, samples sent to GADVASU
Around six tonne of fish were found dead at two villages in Fazilka district over the last weekend, reportedly due to water contamination following discharge of untreated sewage into water bodies.
Residents of Ghadumi and Afsar Wala, villages located near the Pakistan border, said dead fish were found floating in the water and scattered on the river banks on Sunday.
Satpal Singh of Ghadumi said authorities had been alerted. “Both the villages are located near the Sabuana drain where untreated sewage from Bathinda and Muktsar districts flows into villages of Fazilka district. Seepage from this drain has also contaminated groundwater in the adjoining area. A complaint about water contamination in Fazilka is already under the purview of the National Green Tribunal,” he said.
Deputy director fisheries Rajeshwar Kumar said the drain containing municipal waste could have caused severe depletion of oxygen in the water bodies leading fish death. He said the fish multiplied in water accumulated from recent rains and the overflowing drain in the low-lying areas.
“Samples of the dead fish and water from ponds have been sent to the Ludhiana-based Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University to ascertain the cause of mortality,” he said.
Meera Ansal, head of the department of college of fisheries, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU), said: “Several factors may be responsible for the fish morality, including water contamination. But to figure out the cause and to suggest remedial steps, we need to conduct a detailed study.”
Villagers have been complaining of poor quality water being drawn from handpumps at Kadar Baksah, Pucca Chisti, Beri Wala and other villages. A team of Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) has started collecting water samples from the Fazilka district. An official said a detailed report on the quality of water will be submitted to the NGT by August 25.