NEW DELHI: The National Green Tribunal on Friday said the water of the Ganga, between Haridwar and Unnao in UP, was unfit for drinking and bathing, and expressed anguish over the situation. The green panel said that innocent people drank and bathed in the river with reverence, without knowing that it may adversely affect their health.
“Do people of this country know that Ganga water is unfit for drinking and bathing? They perform achamana (purification ritual) thinking that they will go to heaven. Can you imagine which heaven will they if they drink this polluted water,” a bench, headed by NGT chairperson AK Goel, observed.
The green panel directed National Mission for Clean Ganga to install display boards at a gap of 100 kilometres, indicating whether the water was fit for bathing or drinking.
The tribunal, however, said that where there was more habitation, display boards may be put at a shorter distance.
“People are drinking and bathing in the Ganga out of reverence and respect. They do not know that it may be dangerous to their health. If cigarette packets can contain a warning saying it is ‘injurious to health’, why not the people be informed of the adverse effects (of the river water),” the NGT said.