Day 2 of Yamuna HNZ Bridge Vigil

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Day 2 of Yamuna HNZ Bridge Vigil

From: “Yamuna Jiye Abhiyaan” <yamunajiye@gmail.com>

Subject: YJA – Day two of the Yamuna Vigil on HNZ Bridge 2 9 09
Date: Wednesday, September 02, 2009 8:44 AM

Dear Friends,

It was around 10.15 hrs. We were keeping vigil at the new HNZ Bridge. Aradio taxi signalled left and came to a halt. A man alighted from it andbefore we could make him understand that we were there to collect what everhe wished to throw into the beleaguered river he had already hurled thepolythene bag over the fence. On one enquiring of him, “Are you not ashamedof what you have just done”? You seem to carry shame enough, so keep doing,came a swift retort and away he went.

Five minutes later a scooterist came to a halt. We approached anticipatingthat he wished to hand over his wares. He extended his hand and pumped ourscomplimenting profusely. “Great work. This is the only way to make peopleunderstand”. I work at the Supreme Court and have often tried to dissuadepeople from further polluting the river.

Yet another worshipper, “Why don’t you get the polluting drains stopped”?What more bad could mere few flowers do to the river? We reasoned, “you areright about the drains, but where is the river that you wish to revere”? Noriver has always been there, it is there and shall always be there,pollution or no, came a quick reply? He respectfully bowed to the river, andwent his way without either handing us his packet or throwing it into theriver.

An elderly lady walking down the bridge stopped and enquired if she couldpick and take the *panni* (polythene bags) from the collection in thebasket? What will you do with them? This is what I do for a living.

These are some of the glimpses of the citizens of this ancient city thatprides itself on being located on the banks of the holy river Yamuna.

Lessons.

1. A large number of people who ought to know better, just don’t seem to care. 2. There are equally a large number who know and understand that the river is sick and should not be further imperilled. 3. There are some who are confused, as their religious beliefs would not let them see the sickness in the river and compel them to seek solutions away from their own acts. 4. There is a substantial number who live off the polluted state of the river.

Some city, one must admit, that we all live in, friends!

Manoj Misra
Convenor

PS: We collected around 36 packets during the day two of the vigil. It isdue to the perseverance of people like Pushp ji (Nature and People), Bhim,Sudha, Manorama, (at PEACE) and volunteers like Vijay and the local pujarisof the Sri Hanuman ji Temple that we continued the vigil successfully on daytwo. Thanks to the media coverage enquiries for volunteering have started tocome in and hopefully the volunteer shortage would soon be behind us. Forexample, tomorrow the Ahlcon International School, Mayur Vihar students arejoining us to keep the vigil.

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