Steel City ponds left littered after ‘Ganesh Visarjan’

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 08 Sep 2017 11:50:46


Staff Reporter,


Even as Ganesha Utsav concludes with happiness, joy and celebrations, it also causes great environmental concerns to the enlightened citizens of the city as immersion of hundreds of idols in the river and ponds does not only pollute it but also cause several diseases to the people using its water. The guidelines formulated by the Central and State pollution control boards (CPCB and SPCBs) went largely unheeded in spite of some efforts by municipal bodies and police to curtail the practice.

Traditionally, the idols were made of mud and painted with natural colours. But now many are made using plaster of Paris (PoP) and coated with harmful paints containing heavy metals, all of which end up in the rivers on the concluding day. Environmentalist, Mukesh Thite pointed “Till a few decades back, idols were made of clay and decorated with vegetable colours and other biodegradable material. Now idols are made of plaster of Paris and synthetic colours and are decorated with non-biodegradable materials that are not at all friendly to the river”. He also informed that the chemical dyes and colours being used to colour the idols contain poisonous elements.

“Particularly red, blue, orange and green colours contain mercury, zinc oxide, chromium and lead, the potential causes of cancer and they are also hazardous for plants, fishes and other living beings existing inside water bodies”, he added. “Such pollution damages the ecosystem because it kills fishes, damages plants and blocks the natural flow of the water, causing stagnation. It damages health of human beings also by polluting drinking water sources, causing breathing problems, blood and skin diseases,” said a Chemical Engineer, Sufal Sarkar.