Udupi, July 29, 2019: A motorbike rally was organised as part of the ‘Save Indrani River’ advocacy campaign on July 28, Sunday.
“Udupi will be rid of many problems if steps are taken to prevent the pollution of Indrani river,” stressed Udupi-based Human Rights Protection Foundation President Dr Ravindranath Shanbhag. He addressed a gathering after symbolically flagging off the rally and pouring milk into the river.
The river is the main source of water for eight temple ponds. It is polluted with garbage and sewage from surrounding houses. The river flows through Anajeya Swami Temple, Kodavur. “It needs to be rid of all kinds of pollutants. The river is capable of meeting city people’s water demands,” he added. Indrani River flows for 10 kilometres before joining the sea. The river is joined by tributaries at eight places. Indrani river replenishes water in Madhwa Sarovar.
The water flowing from Sagri and Brahmagiri joins Indrani. Shanbhag blamed the city’s poor underground drainage for the massive pollution of River Indrani.
The underground drainage system in Udupi was designed for a population of less than 25,000. Today the city’s population has exceeded six lakh. Besides underground drainage upgrade, the municipality should also provide an underground drainage connection from Manipal to Indrali.
“Sadly, nowadays, the city is planned and basic infrastructure is provided much later,” Dr Shanbhag regretted.
The pollution of Indrani river has resulted in the spread of many diseases like Dengue. He said the river, which used to provide water for irrigation, for eight months without interruption, was reduced to the status of a drain.
He urged youth to come forward with initiatives to protect the river. Activist Prakash Malpe blamed people for polluting rivers without realising their value. Shri Panchadurga Parameshwari temple managing trustee Jaykar Shetty said the Indrani river had a history of a 1,000 years and was a key water body.