Yamuna pollution: Cycle yatra from Agra’s Taj to Delhi’s India Gate
Pramod Katara began a ‘cycle yatra’ on I-Day from Agra’s Taj Mahal to India Gate in Delhi to focus attention on the polluted Yamuna river. Meanwhile, the river again crossed the danger mark in Delhi
Pramod Kumar Katara began his 'cycle yatra' early on Wednesday from the iconic Taj Mahal to India Gate in New Delhi to focus attention on the polluted Yamuna river.
"This time it is not just for a record but to draw the attention of the government to the polluted Yamuna. If the Taj is to be protected for posterity, Yamuna will have to be saved too," the 53-year-old said.
The record for long distance cycling with the national tricolour is for the Limca Book of Records, he added. "Already I have 21 records in my name, from Swiss ball balancing to yoga, but this one is going to be special for Yamuna," Katara said.
Katara said he hoped to reach India Gate, a World War I monument in the heart of Delhi, by August 15 evening via the Yamuna Expressway, covering the distance in around 12 hours. Members of the River Connect Campaign collected at Agra’s Mehtab Bagh to cheer Katara.
Rain-swollen Yamuna again crosses danger mark in Delhi
Meanwhile, almost two weeks after the water level in the Yamuna in Delhi receded, the river again started swelling up on Tuesday, on August 14 and has breached the danger mark to touch 205.30 meters.
Delhi may witness a flood-like situation as 174,072 cusec water was released from Haryana's Hathnikund barrage on Monday. At 4 pm on August 14, 48,716 cusec of water was released from the barrage, a government official said. "At 8 pm on Tuesday additional 23,138 cusec water was released from the barrage," he said.
The water released from the barrage, which provides drinking water to Delhi, normally takes 72 hours to reach the city.
Himachal Pradesh has been receiving heavy rainfall in the past few days due to which the Yamuna is in spate. The river had crossed the danger mark of 204.83 meters on July 28 after parts of northern India, including Delhi, witnessed heavy rain.
In a review meeting held on Tuesday, the Delhi Chief Secretary has directed all the departments to take the same steps which were taken between July 28 and July 31—when the river flowed above the danger mark. He directed the departments to deploy boats at vulnerable points. He also directed the officials to remain pro-active to handle any emergency situation.
People living in the riverbeds are being relocated from August 15 morning to buildings or tents installed by the government in higher areas.
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