Delhi: Devotees bathe in Yamuna's toxic water as Chhath Puja festivities begin

Delhi: Devotees bathe in Yamuna’s toxic water as Chhath Puja festivities begin.

The first day of Chhath Puja began on Monday when the devotees bathed in the Yamuna River near Kalindi Kunj. Devotees, however, expressed disappointment with the quality of the water in the river, as a thick layer of toxic foam could be seen on the surface of the river due to rising pollution levels in the national capital.

“Taking a dip in the river is important in Chhath Puja. I have come here but the water is dirty. It is causing us a lot of problems. Diseases can also occur because of this. But we are helpless. The cleanliness of the water and the ghats is a lot. best in Bihar. The Delhi government should make sure the ghats are cleaned up,” said Kalpana.

Sushma, who was also there to take a dip, added: “The water is extremely dirty, but what can we do? We have to take a bath. I am from Banka, Bihar. The water in Sultanganj is really good. But we had to come here as our family lives here. ”

Shakeel, a local resident, noted that the foam has been there for about a month.

“I am a diver and have been living here for the last 25 years. People take baths with soaps and shampoos and also wash their clothes. Water from every household and water from drains comes here. This results in the formation of foam. Foam has been forming in the river for a month, “he said.

According to experts, the toxic foam is due to the high phosphate content after the discharge of industrial pollutants, including detergents, into the river. Ammonia levels in the river have also risen.

Chhath Puja is dedicated to the Sun God and is observed mainly by the people of Bihar, Jharkhand and bordering areas in Uttar Pradesh.

According to Hindu tradition, devotees worship the Sun God and his wife Usha to express gratitude and seek their blessings. Devotees gather and bathe in rivers, ponds, and other bodies of water during the four-day festivities.

This year, the festival began on November 8 with the ‘Nahai Khai’ ritual and will conclude on November 11 with devotees performing ‘Usha Arghya’ (prayers to the rising sun).

The main celebration is on November 10 when the devotees will offer ‘argha’ to the Sun God.