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  Only 20-25 per cent idols immersed in artificial ponds in six days

Only 20-25 per cent idols immersed in artificial ponds in six days

Published : Sep 11, 2016, 1:55 am IST
Updated : Sep 11, 2016, 1:55 am IST

Despite several politicians, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and prominent celebrities appealing citizens to use environment-friendly Ganesh idols and immerse them only in artificial lakes, th

BMC has made several artificial ponds for Ganesh immersion. (Photo: Asian Age)
 BMC has made several artificial ponds for Ganesh immersion. (Photo: Asian Age)

Despite several politicians, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and prominent celebrities appealing citizens to use environment-friendly Ganesh idols and immerse them only in artificial lakes, the bid to prevent Mumbai's water bodies from getting polluted has failed.

Data obtained from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) reveals that in the past six days of Ganpati Visarjan, only about 20-25 per cent of the idols were immersed in artificial ponds. According to the data, out of the 603 idols immersed until 6pm on Saturday, only 93 were immersed in artificial lakes.

Besides, activists have claimed that after the immersion rituals get over, the polluted water from artificial ponds are later dumped into the nullahs or sea without being treated. Thus the whole exercise of using artificial ponds turns futile.

Stalin D, an environment activist working at city-based NGO Vanashakti said, "It is a joke to build artificial lakes and claim that it is preventing our water bodies from getting polluted. The BMC ultimately throws this polluted water either into the sea or the creeks. What is the point of the organisation showing that it cares about environment damage "

A senior civic official, on condition of anonymity, said, "We don't know where the water goes and neither do we treat the water. However, we do not pour the water into the nullahs as several idols have plaster-of-paris and oil paint. Instead, we scatter it in the nearby gardens."

Activists, however, claim that even this process is harmful for the plants and trees in the garden as the soil gets polluted. Ahead of the Ganesh festival, the BMC had built 31 artificial lakes across the city and urged citizens to use them for idol immersions.