Ghaziabad's water highly toxic, claims NGO

Ghaziabad's water highly toxic, claims NGO

Industrial effluents are being dumped through reverse boring and are accumulating in the underground water, leading to increased chromium percentage in the water, NGO Paryawaran Sachetak Samiti (PSS) said in a release here.

"The chromium contents were found to be 16.30 mg/l, while the maximum permissible limit is 0.05 mg/l -- this means that the chromium content is nearly 326 times over the safe limit. The untreated industrial effluents are being pumped directly in the ground water and the Central Ground Water Board has declared all of Ghaziabad a critical zone," alleged the NGO.

It said ground water was being poisoned and these toxic wastes are spreading to all the parts of city. The NGO said it had earlier reported about the serious contamination of ground water but in the latest study, industrial effluents have been found in the water supplied to the Lohianagar, Meerut Road, Nabada, Mukundnagar, Sahibabad, Kadkadmodel, Delta Colonies, Bhoorgargi, Bhurbharatnagar and other areas though residents remain unaware.

Suspecting that chromium might account for the slight yellow tinge in the water, the PSS said it had the water tested for the heavy metals, adding that the contaminated water was having a bad effect on people.

"Ghaziabad's residents suffer from high rate of cancer, miscarriages and birth defects," said Vijay Pal Baghel, the NGO chief.

Meanwhile, the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board said it was aware of the contamination and measures to deal with it were underway.

"Bio-remediation work is in progress in Lohianagar where chromium contents were found.

The four industrial units - Shri Ram Pistons, Kathuria, Marshall and Mascot - are funding the project for long-term remedy approved by the state Pollution Control Board," said T.U. Khan, the board's regional manager in Ghaziabad.

Baghel refuted the claims.

"No work is in progress for bio-remedial project. The pollution control board has not even identified the land for the project. The regional manager's claim is only on paper," he said.

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