Stop genocide by releasing toxic waste into Sutlej: Activists : The Tribune India

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Stop genocide by releasing toxic waste into Sutlej: Activists

Stop genocide by releasing  toxic waste into Sutlej: Activists

Environmentalists Giani Kewal Singh, Amitoj Mann, Lakha Sidhana and others have raised voice for protection of the Sutlej and Buddha Nullah from pollution in Ludhiana. Ashwani Dhiman



Tribune News Service

Harshraj Singh

Ludhiana, April 5

Environmental activists, including former jathedar of Takht Damdama Sahib Giani Kewal Singh, actor-director Amitoj Mann, Lakha Sidhana, Gurpreet Singh Chandbaja and others raised their voice for the protection of the Sutlej, which is being polluted by releasing highly toxic and visibly black waters through the Buddha Nullah (Buddha Dariya) and the Bhattian STP drain.

The activists blamed the poisonous waters being released into the water bodies as a big threat to generations in Punjab, which was known as the land of the rivers. They demanded that the state government, led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, must take steps to protect the Sutlej, Buddha Nullah and other water bodies from pollution.

They said the government must ensure proper functioning of all STPs and CETPs. The environmental activists visited the Buddha Nullah and the Jamalpur STP site on Tajpur Road here this morning. The highly stinking and polluted water was being dumped into the nullah at this site and it was even difficult to stand there.

They then visited Kasabad village where the visibly black and stinking water from the Bhattian STP was being released through a drain into the Sutlej. The activists questioned the role of the PPCB, MC and other departments for failing to stop pollution.

The activists appealed to the people to come forward and make a ‘jan andolan’ to save the waters of the state from pollution. Some activists also raised a demand that dyeing units that were ‘polluting’ the Sutlej and the nullah should be shut down.

Actor Amitoj said it was shameful as the river was being polluted openly. He questioned why the Punjab Pollution Control Board turned a blind eye towards the violations.

“The toxic water being dumped into the river is killing generations. Instead of protecting those who are polluting the waters, action should be taken against them. The dyeing industry should be shut down in Ludhiana as it has been closed in other parts of the world too,” he said.

He said: “We are pinning hopes on Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to take concrete action for the protection of the rivers and other water bodies from pollution,” he said.

Lakha Sidhana said the Sutlej was being polluted and people in various areas were using its water for drinking.

“The people are suffering from health problems due to polluted river waters. The level of groundwater is already decreasing in the state while the river waters are being made poisonous. It is a major issue. The importance of water is highlighted in Gurbani. The waters of Punjab should be saved and no polluted water be released into the water bodies,” he said.

In the afternoon, the activists also inspected the ‘hadda rodi’ site where carcasses of animals are disposed of in an ‘unauthorised’ manner on the bank of Sutlej near Ladhowal. The waste is then dumped into the river.

In Gaunspur village, residents told the environmental activists that they had been suffering from health problems due to the polluted water of the nullah while the successive government had failed to provide them any relief. In villages and other areas located along the nullah, the groundwater has been polluted due to the toxic water of the drain, the residents said.

Later, they visited a site near Walipur village where the nullah merges into the Sutlej. The two contrasting shades of water — black and relatively clear — are visible at the site. Activist Gurpreet Singh Chandbaja has demanded to stop the “genocide that is being committed” by releasing polluted waters into the Sutlej. An environmentalist, Col JS Gill (retd), said dumping of all kinds of untreated waste, whether it was industrial, sewerage, dairy or solid waste, into the nullah should be stopped.

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#bhagwant mann #buddha nullah #Environment #giani kewal singh #lakha sidhana #Pollution



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