Kolkata, Dec 8: After a two-month-long river rafting expedition along the Ganga, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) team has found that pollution level in the river is "very high" in Uttar Pradesh. "In UP, bodies of human and animal carcasses, are left to decompose in the river.
Turtles, which clean the river, are being poached in large numbers besides unsustainable methods of fishing being used," ITBP Commandant Surinder Khatri, who is leading the expedition said. "In Kanpur, industrial pollution is very high," he added.
The 45-member contingent had travelled from Dev Prayag in Uttarakhand on October 2 and are to terminate this Saturday at Gangasagar in West Bengal.
They would have then covered 2,350 km in 73 days using two engine-driven inflatable rafts.
There should be sewerage treatment plants and toilets at all places near the river so the flow of waste water was controlled, Khatri said. "Beside this, in most states boiled water from country liquor manufacturing units is discharged directly into the Ganga river.
This kills marine life, which in turn affects the health of the river," he said, adding there should be dredging of the river at many places.
The ITBP official appreciated West Bengal's efforts in cleaning the Ganga and said, after they had crossed Farraka no bodies were spotted floating and saw treated water getting discharged in the river.
"Bathing with soap and washing clothes using chemical detergent is very common. There should be a ban on it," the ITBP team suggested. During their journey, the team has been spreading awareness campaign on Ganga with student rallies and school and college visits.