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COVID-19 Lockdown Impact: 40-50% Improvement In Ganga's Water Quality Says Expert

Ganga became visibly pristine in Varanasi amid lockdown; a sight for sore eyes on social media who are otherwise used to see images of polluted, frothed rivers

Ganga

With economic activities at halt and people staying home, nature seems to reclaim some of its beauty and sparkle that it lost to unchecked pollution and mindless resource exploitation. As a testament to this, north India's two most important rivers — the Ganga and the Yamuna — became visibly pristine; a sight for sore eyes on social media who are otherwise used to see images of polluted, frothed rivers with piles of waste flowing over.

According to Dr. PK Mishra, Professor at Chemical Engineering and Technology, IIT-BHU, Varanasi, there has been a 40-50% improvement in the quality of water in river Ganga. He attributed this to the shutting down of industries due to the Coronavirus lockdown which usually discharges large volumes of toxic effluents into the river.

The nationwide Coronavirus lockdown kicked in from March 25 and will run through April 14. The aim is to curb the spread of the highly communicable and deadly virus that has so far infected over 3,300 people and killed 77.

READ | COVID-19 Doubling Rate At 4.1 After Tablighi Jamaat, Otherwise Would Be 7.4: Health Min

What locals say

Locals in Varanasi also said that water in the Ganga river has seen improvement in quality as is apparently more clearer. "There is a lot of difference. Today, the water looks clean. One of the biggest reasons behind this is that today all factories are closed," said a local.

A person from Kanpur said that though the water quality in the Ganga has improved, the water levels are low. ''Once the water levels increase, Ganga will appear completely clean," the local said. The reason for the low water level can be attributed to the summer season which sees a spike in household water usage and the increase in the rate of evaporation.

PICTURES: Water In Yamuna At Delhi Looks Cleaner Amid Industry Shutdown Due To Coronavirus

Netizens also took to Twitter to share their awe

Bollywood actor Dia Mirza said, "Our rivers are getting a rest from industrial effluents . Good time for us all to learn how quickly nature can heal provided we allow her."

READ | Lockdown: Health Of River Ganga Improves

READ | Hazardous Toxic Foam Reappears On The Surface Of Yamuna In Delhi; Froths Up Amid Rains

(With ANI inputs) (ANI photo)

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