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JUSCO embarks on cleanliness drive at Subarnarekha River ghats

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Jamshedpur, Oc. 25: Jamshedpur Notified Area Committee (JNAC) and Jusco have taken up the cudgels to render the Subarnarekha ghats clean.

Jusco launched a drive on Sunday to clean the different ghats of the Subarnarekha River which were polluted following immersion of Goddess Durga idols and other materials during the weekend.

The utilities company, a subsidiary of Tata Steel, has also deployed two Tata Ace to ferry the garbage and dispose it off properly. Like every year in the past, the Subarnarekha River ghats, which fall under JNAC command, were choked by putrefying puja paraphernalia, including flowers, plastic, cloth and clay, following the immersion of idols on the Vijaya Dashami day on Saturday.

A senior Jusco official said, “We have deployed over a dozen workers for the cleansing operation which will continue for 3-4 days. Every year after the immersions, the river ghats get accumulated with wastes like polythene bags, plastics, cloth and flowers.

Harmful substances such as polythene bags and chemical dyes used in idol making are detrimental for the health of humans and aquatic life as well. Keeping this in mind, we began the cleansing operation.” “We have provided the earth movers for cleaning up the mess.

If the civic body wants, we can also provide workers in the cleaning activity,” the official added.  Apart from the three earth movers, tractors were also deployed on the banks of the Subarnarekha River for the cleaning operation. First, the workers started removing the wooden frames of idols, while the rest of the litter will be cleared in the next few days.

Like every past years, the Durga idol immersion has led to the pollution of the few water bodies of the city this year too, making their water hazardous for use. Experts have expressed their concern over the negligence of the puja committees in this regard.

There are two major rivers of the city, Subarnarekha and Kharkai, and as these are located close to the town, most of the Durga idols have been immersed in these rivers.

For some years now, there is a growing awareness regarding the water pollution caused by the immersion of Durga idols made out of plaster of Paris, in natural water bodies such as lakes, rivers and the sea. Pollution is also caused by the waste generated by the non-biodegradable accessories used during the worship.

“Immersion of idols, flowers and other material of religious significance lead to pollution and a lot of these things block the filters of the water treatment plants. Because the quantity of pollutants is so high,” noted a pollution board official.

Senior officials of Jharkhand State Pollution Control Board said that as per norms, traditional clay should be used for making idols rather than baked clay. It also prohibits the use of toxic and non-degradable chemical dyes and instead prescribes natural colours used in food products.

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