Green riders to spread awareness about Yamuna pollution

June 4th, 2008 - 3:02 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 4 (IANS) On World Environment Day Thursday, a group of activists, students and environmentalists will travel on their motorbikes along the most polluted stretch of the Yamuna river, from Delhi to Agra, reminding themselves and sensitizing others of the alarming situation.
The 10-day rally, which will have over 25 participants, is called “Qutub se Taj, Ek hi Awaaz”.

Kapil Mishra of the Youth for Justice group, which is spearheading the campaign, said that this rally is just the beginning of a year-long campaign to spread awareness about the Yamuna.

“Through this rally, we will be tracing the most polluted and threatened 200 km stretch of the Yamuna, from Delhi to Agra. While going to Agra, we will travelling on the left bank of the Yamuna and while returning, on the right,” Mishra told IANS.

“Enroute, we will camp at various villages on the river banks like in Faridabad and Ballabhgarh and interact with the villagers - tell them about the deplorable state of the river and how they can do something about it,” he added.

This, Mishra said, will help the group understand the river’s influence on the socio-cultural and religious framework of the society.

The group will reach Agra June 10 when there will be a `aarti’ (traditional Hindu worship) of the river near the Taj Mahal. They will return in Delhi June 15.

A question, though, which pricks one is that why a rally on motorbikes? Wouldn’t bicycles be more eco-friendly?

“We had many discussions on this factor. But we realized that a rally on bicycle for this long a stretch will be very exhausting and time consuming. Moreover, all our motorbikes have their pollution certificates in place.

“And then we felt that it’s better that we do something instead of shelving the entire plan and sit doing nothing,” Mishra said.

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