Pune looks to get citizens involved to protect its rivers

Highlighting the need for coordination between the non-profit organisations and the civic body, the first step of the process is to create awareness among citizens, that ultimately, either directly or indirectly they are responsible for the pollution and garbage in the rivers.

The Pune Municipal Corporation together with Mayor Mukta Tilak, recently announced that they have decided to dedicate one day (Saturday/Sunday) a week for keeping the two riverbeds of Pune, the Mula and Mutha clean. 

On Sunday, Tilak along with Pune municipal commissioner, Saurabh Rao participated in a clean-up drive at the Sidheshwar ghat on Mutha river, as a part of India river day. “The idea is to have an ongoing cleanliness drive for the whole year until people realise the importance of rivers. The drive will begin with an awareness creation campaign, on the negatives of throwing garbage into the river,” Tilak told reporters.

Highlighting the need for coordination between the non-profit organisations and the civic body, the first step of the process is to create awareness among citizens, that ultimately, either directly or indirectly they are responsible for the pollution and garbage in the rivers.

“PMC will be taking review meetings every 8 to 10 days and will update our plan of action according to the requirement,” said Rao. According to the civic body they had organised a cleanliness drive prior to the Ganesh Chaturthi but it has not taken long since for the river to become polluted again. “It is not a one-time solution, continuous wholehearted intervention is required from PMC, citizens, and NGOs. We have the equipment needed to tackle solid and liquid waste, sufficient funds, emergency provisions. We just need to synchronize the efforts. Funding will not be an issue, as in the 2018-2019 budget provision, we have made a dedicated budget for river cleaning, overall sanitation, and assessment,” added Rao.

Image may contain: 8 people, people smiling, people standing and outdoor
As part of river clean up activity, residents, volunteers, and environment lovers flocked in large number and spent around an hour cleaning. As many as 20 organisations in Pune jointly conducted the cleanliness drive in association with Pune municipal corporation (PMC) to create awareness of the depleting water body, a main source of water for many. [Credit: Jeevit Nadi FB]

 “Looking at the current pathetic condition of the rivers, seven NGO’s from various parts of the country came together in 2014 to understand the real cause behind the pathetic situations of rivers today and come up with solutions for the same. November 28 was declared as India river day, with the agenda “to get rivers flowing naturally,” said Niranjan Upsane, founding member NGO Jeevit Nadi.

The NGOs had identified Vitthalwadi ghat, Mutha river, S M Joshi bridge, Ganesh ghat Aundh (Rajiv Gandhi bridge), Mula river, Mula-Ram river confluence, New Baner link road, Someshwar temple, Someshwarwadi, Pashan, Live water spring, near Vaidehi enclave; Bavdhan, Indrayani river – Dehu ghat, Pawana river – Kejubai Bandhara, behind Birla hospital, Thergaon, Kavdi Pat bird watching point, and Salim Ali bird sanctuary. “We are aiming at getting the rivers water-hyacinth-free, pollution-free and start flowing naturally by 2020 and making Pune the first ‘garbage-free-river’ city of India. We have resolved to make the rivers sewage-free and toxin-free by the year 2025,” said Sugandha Gosavi, member of Jeevit Nadi.

Image may contain: 4 people, people smiling, people standing, outdoor and nature
[Credits: Jeevit Nadi FB]

Shailaja Deshpande, member of the Jeevit Nadi team told iamrenew, “Besides the work that we’re doing with the civic body, we work on a system that uses public participation. Under ‘My River, My Responsibility’ we are trying to get this message across that nearly 70 percent of pollutants in Indian rivers today is because of us, the citizens. And that it is us who need to come out and help in the cleaning process of our rivers.”

(Visited 80 times, 1 visits today)

Ayush Verma

Ayush Verma

Ayush is a correspondent at iamrenew.com and writes on renewable energy and sustainability. As an engineering graduate trying to find his niche in the energy journalism segment, he also works as a staff writer for saurenergy.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2 × two =