Ahead of President Trump's visit, who will arrive in India on February 24 and is expected to visit the Taj Mahal in Agra, the Uttar Pradesh Irrigation Department has released 500 cusecs of water into the Yamuna to improve the condition of the river. The water has been released from the Ganganahar in Bulandshahr to improve the "environmental condition" of the river. Yamuna flows adjacent to the boundary wall of the Taj Mahal.
Trump is set to visit India on a two-day trip between February 24 and 25. The main segment of the visit will take place in Delhi, though an option of having a short visit by the president to another city is being explored.
The cities that are being considered include Uttar Pradesh's Agra and Gujarat's Ahmedabad.
Water will reach Yamuna in Agra by Feb 21
"Keeping in mind US President Trump's visit to Agra, 500 cusecs of water has been released from the Ganganahar to improve the environmental condition of the Yamuna. This water will reach the Yamuna in Mathura by February 20 and Agra by February 21 afternoon," the department's Superintending Engineer Dharmender Singh Phogat said.
He said the department aims to maintain a certain level of water in the Yamuna till February 24.
This move is likely to reduce the "foul smell" from the Yamuna, Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) assistant engineer Arvind Kumar said when asked about the development.
Water to improve oxygen level in Yamuna
"If 500 cusecs of water has been released into the Yamuna to control pollution, it will certainly have an impact. This will also improve the oxygen level in the Yamuna in Mathura and in Agra. This move may not make the Yamuna's water fit for drinking, but could reduce foul smell from the river," he said.
Gopeshwar Nath Chaturvedi who is associated with the Shri Mathur Chaturved Parishad that is working to clean the Yamuna, said,"The move will hardly have any impact on the river."