BHU study: Pollution in Ganga has decreased by 25% to 30% during lockdown
The composite samples of Ganga water were collected from five locations, including Shooltankeshwar Ghat, Samne Ghat, Asi Ghat, Dashashwamedh Ghat and Rajghat before the announcement of Lockdown on March 24 and then during the lockdown on April 20.
Water pollution in river Ganga has decreased by 25% to 30% during the lockdown implemented to contain the spread of coronavirus, said professor BD Tripathi, chairman, Mahamana Malaviya Research Centre for Ganga, River Development and Water Resource Management (MMRC for Ganga), BHU on Monday.
The conclusion was arrived on the basis of study of water samples collected on March 24 and on April 20.
Prof Tripathi said the composite samples of Ganga water were collected from five locations, including Shooltankeshwar Ghat, Samne Ghat, Asi Ghat, Dashashwamedh Ghat and Rajghat before the announcement of Lockdown on March 24 and then during the lockdown on April 20.
“By composite samples, we mean the average of five samples each from different spots of every site. They are collected for accurate results,” said Prof Tripathi.
Prof Tripathi said, “We tested Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) and Dissolved Oxygen (DO) level in the Ganga water samples. We found that the concentration of dissolved oxygen increased by 20 to 30 percent in Ganga water and the concentration of biochemical oxygen decreased from 35 to 40 percent. In total, Ganga pollution load has been decreased from 25 to 30 percent.”
Prof Tripathi added that there has been a very positive effect on Ganga as the river shows that it can rejuvenate itself.
Insisting that there were many reasons for the decrease in pollution in Ganga, he said the pollution has decreased because there was around 40 percent decrease in the number of bodies cremated at Manikarnika Ghat and Harishchandra Ghat. There is also a check on the immersion of half-burnt flesh content of cremated bodies in the river Ganga.
Prof Tripathi said that at present the discharge of toxic effluent from more than 1,000 small scale and cottage industries and motor workshops is completely stopped in Ganga in Varanasi.
Prof Tripathi further added that during the sampling of water from Ganga, the highest transparency was observed because fishes were seen swimming up to the depth of one meter from the surface of the Ganga.