Taking a dip in the sacred rivers of India to wash away one's sins is not a new practice. The occassion of Chhatt Pooja saw devotees taking a dip in River Yamuna amid what appeared like frozen ice or snow. Look closer and it is thick foam on the surface of the water floating in the river. What is alarming is that the foam is TOXIC in nature. Experts inform that the foam is caused by phosphates and surfactants in the untreated sewage from Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. These devotees taking a dip to wash away their sins are unwittingly becoming susceptible to a range of health concerns such as skin irritation and allergies, gastrointestinal problems, typhoid as well a neurological issues and hormonal imbalances.
The froth is an environmental concern, too. The air as well as water pollution in and around these regions, if not addressed, will see far worse repercussions, environmentalists have warned.