Idol Immersions Add To Brahmaputra’s Woes
GUWAHATI: Durga Puja ended in Guwahati with much fanfare which was witnessed during the four-day festival. The celebrations ended on the day of Bijoya Dashami with more than 400 idols being immersed at various places in Guwahati.
However, experts as well as residents have questioned the environmental impact of the same.
The idols immersed in the water are mostly made of plaster of paris and other synthetic material and paints. They have been known to disturb marine life and also contribute to water pollution.
As per the Pollution Control Board Assam (PCBA), coliform bacteria level of the Brahmaputra River at Chandrapur was found to be 1500 MPN/100 ml in October 2018.
Deputy Commissioner of Kamrup (Metro) Biswajit Pegu told G Plus, “This year, there were seven ghats in various places of Guwahati where immersion took place. The major ones are Kachomari ghat, Pandu ghat, and Sunsali ghat.”
When asked about the district administration’s plans to pick up the idols from the water bodies after immersion, he said, “We have thought of that but in the major ghats like Pandu, Kachomari and Sunsali, the immersion will be done in the Brahmaputra River. So, it will be a little difficult to pick up immediately from the river but still we will see what we can do. We will try to pick up the idols from the other smaller places.”
In the same vein, as Assam is fighting to curb the use of single-use plastic, roads in Guwahati’s Kasomari Ghat area portrayed a different story after the Bijoya Dashami celebrations.
The road leading to the ghat was filled with disposable cups and a quick walkthrough of the area was enough to realize the futility of the overwhelming discussions about ‘plastic ban.’
As per reports, the plastic waste generated by Guwahati is increasing at an alarming rate. The city generates around 37,000 kgs of plastic waste every day, about 12.37 percent of the entire state’s production.
It covers 0.42 per cent of the state’s land cover but is already contributing up to 12 percent of the total plastic generation in the state.
Recently, amidst the high-end discussions, ‘Assam Secretariat’ banned the use of single-use plastic in its premises.
Puja procession stops music during 'Azaan'
In what can be termed as an incident showcasing communal harmony, people taking out a procession for the immersion of ‘Durga Idol’ in Guwahati’s Machkhowa area on October 8, brought their celebration to a halt as they approached a local mosque.
The first call known as ‘Azaan’ was being recited and after the members of the Durga Puja procession heard it, they immediately stopped their music which they felt might interrupt the evening prayers going on in the mosque.
This noble gesture by the procession of ‘Shantipur Sluice Gate Puja Committee’ was applauded by the local Muslims of the area.
Speaking to G Plus, one of the locals, Shehnaz Anwar said, “The people along with the procession went via Machkhowa and knowing the fact that it was namaz time they showed respect and turned the music off. This was a commendable gesture.”
"The people from Athgaon, Machkhowa, Bharalu and Santipur areas are always like family and we have been respecting each other's sentiment since a long time", she added.