If there is one positive side to the global lockdown then it’s nature reclaiming its space on the planet. In India, too, the environment seems to be taking a positive turn, the latest of which is the river Yamuna. Pictures of the river’s clear waters are doing the rounds on social media, and here’s all we know about it. By Bayar Jain

 

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With the 21-day lockdown in India, industries from all corners of the country have also been forced to stop operations. As a direct consequence of this, pictures of river Yamuna looking cleaner than ever have started coming to the forefront on social media platforms. If social media videos are to be believed, marine animals and migratory birds have returned to this water body as well.

The river, that has been plagued with pollutants for years, has shown improvements in the water quality. Normally, Yamuna river also gets polluted due to bathing; and throwing flowers, garlands and other worship material as well as the industrial effluent.

As per news channels, the closure of industries around the Yamuna could have played a large role in curbing the pollution levels there. It is important to note here that around a year ago, the same river showed thick toxic foam forming on the river’s surfaces in New Delhi due to the high pollution levels.

 

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However, the authenticity of the images cannot be verified yet. In fact, some netizens also claim that this level of cleanliness is has not translated to other parts of the river in different cities.

Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) says it will soon carry out a study to assess the change in water quality. In news reports, Prashant Gargava, member-secretary, CPCB is quoted saying, ”We are in the planning phase and samples will be collected soon. We have already analysed the impact of the lockdown on air quality and something similar will be done for the Yamuna.” Additionally, the NGT-appointed Yamuna Monitoring Committee has also asked both CPCB and Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) to carry out a study to provide a baseline for agencies to act accordingly. A reason for the delay to this assessment, however, could be attributed to labs and most government offices being shut due to the lockdown.

Related: #SomeGoodNews: India Is Breathing Cleaner Air. Thanks To The Lockdown