The Physiochemical, Biological Quality and Seasonal Variability of River Ganges in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India
Keywords:Ganga River, Physiochemical, Biological, Seasonal variability
Background: The Ganga River is a life-line, a symbol of purity and virtue for countless people of India. Nearly all the sewage, industrial effluent, runoff from chemical fertilizers and pesticides used in agriculture within the basin, and large quantities of solid waste, including thousands of animals carcasses and hundreds of human corpses are dumped in the river everyday which posed a considerable public health threat to the religious bathers and a large number of people living along the river who uses Ganges water for drinking and other household purposes. Objective: To assess the physiochemical and biological quality of river Ganges water and to study the seasonality pattern of pollution of River Ganges. Materials and Methods: Two points namely Samne ghat and Rajghat (entry and exit point of Ganga into the city) were selected as the first and the last sampling stations, beside 8 other intermediate sampling stations to assess the physiochemical and biological quality of River Ganga water. The study was conducted from April 2013 to March 2014 and this period was crudely divided into three seasons viz Winter, Summer and Rainy season for the purpose of studying seasonality pattern of pollution. Results: As the river progress through city of Varanasi, Total dissolved solids (TDS), Chloride, Conductivity, Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD), Nitrate, Nitrite and Most Probable Number (MPN) increases, DO decreases progressively and Temperature and pH remain same. Conclusion: As far as quality of water with regard to recreational and industrial purposes are concerned, Ganges water may be considered useful but most of the parameters observed across different seasons indicates that it may not be used as potable water.
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