In order to raise awareness about the chronic pollution plaguing the Yamuna river, environment activists on Sunday symbolically poured glucose and milk into the "dying and sick" river in Agra. Several members of the River Connect Campaign gathered by the Yamuna to express their concern for the sacred river, which is now considered to be almost "dead" due to pollutants and effluents.
Boxes of milk and glucose were offered to "Yamuna Maiyya" (mother Yamuna) as a token of gesture, on the occasion of Mother's Day.
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The act also aimed at showing their affinity and bonding with the lifeline of the historic city.
Commenting on the status of the river, social activist Shravan Kumar Singh said, "Unfortunately, the river has been reduced to a vast sewage canal."
Activists Ranjan Sharma and Shailendra Singh Narwaar said a barrage downstream of the Taj Mahal was the need of the hour, but despite promises by the Yogi Adityanath government, no concrete action had been taken till now.
On pouring of glucose and milk into the water, activists Rahul Raj and Deepak Rajput said these were symbolic gestures to highlight that the dying river would endanger historical edifices, like the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort.
Two days ago, Union Minister for Shipping and Transport, Nitin Gadkari, at an election rally in Delhi had said that within two years, tourists would be able to travel to Agra from Delhi on the river in steamers.
A similar promise was made by him in 2015, but no follow-up action had been taken, said Goswami Nandan Shrotriya who performs the daily Yamuna 'aarti' ritual.