Meet the man who stands by the Godavari to prevent people from polluting the river
Nashik-based Chandra Kishore Patil has been standing guard over the Godavari for almost five years now, trying to ensure that people do not dump their waste and trash into the river.
Across the world, our rivers, reservoirs, lakes, and seas are flooded by waste, plastic, chemicals, and other pollutants. This widespread problem of water pollution is jeopardising the health of people in villages, towns, and cities.
The magnitude of the problem led Chandra Kishore Patil, a resident of Indiranagar, Nashik, to take a stand and work towards mitigating this problem in the Godavari River.
Chandra Kishore’s inspiring story came into the spotlight after IFS officer Swetha Boddu tweeted about him on her personal handle.
Chandra Kishore, who has been living near the river, began noticing the increasing contamination, especially after festivities. Five years ago, he decided to put a stop to this, and has been standing by the river all day to stop people from dumping waste into the river.
He makes a point by filling a bottle with water from the river and asking passers-by to drink it. When they refuse, he makes them aware of their actions and how they lead to severe water pollution.
“I stand beside the river from morning till 11 pm, with a whistle and alert people not to throw garbage in the river. Many are rude, but I still tell them not to do such things,” Chandra Kishore told Hindustan Times.
“I’ve been doing this every year for five years now. And will continue doing this till my health permits,” he said, according to News18.
The waste accumulated at the bridge is taken away by the civic body to a separate dump yard.
A similar effort was earlier seen in Kerala’s Kottayam. NS Rajappan, 69, has been working to clean Vembanad Lake. He sets off on a boat every morning to clear the water body of plastic bottles, and makes about Rs 12 per kilogram of plastic. But his mission is to keep the lake clean and get a bigger boat someday.
Edited by Teja Lele