SHILLONG, April 16: Water quality of the two rivers running through Shillong city – Umshyrpi and Umkhrah – is being monitored by the Meghalaya State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) under the National Water Monitoring Programme, sponsored by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the Meghalaya Assembly was informed on Monday.
Replying to a question, state Urban Affairs Minister Hamletson Dohling said as per the monitoring programme it was found that the water in these two rivers falls under ‘E’ category.
“Comparing the water quality with designated best use, notified by CPCB the rivers falls under E category indicating that the river water is fit only for irrigation, industrial cooling and controlled waste disposal,” Dohling told the House.
Along the river Umshyrpi there were three stations – Risa Colony, Near Law College-Dhanketi and Umshyrpi Bridge – to check the water quality running through it. While along the Umkhrah river, there were four such stations – Demthring, Umkaliar, Mawlai and Mawpdang.
Dohling also informed the House that the Urban Affairs Department is fencing the Umshyrpi and Umkhrah at strategic points to further prevent dumping of garbage. Some stretches of the rivers have been fenced with funds from the Swachh Bharat Mission and Special Urban Works Programme (SUWP).
On the Umkhrah river, fencing has been erected from Lawmali junction to Jingthangbriew with a total length of 1324 metres at a total cost of Rs 47, 94, 590.
In the river Umshyrpi fencing has been erected at Eldorado point till Dunhill shop – 21 metres, in Dhanketi, river bank along ICFAI University – 171 metres, Filling Point Bridge – 135 metres (Near Harrison Overbridge), Bridge and river length behind Seven Set Basic School facing Malki Playground till Lady Reid School – 54 metres at a total cost of Rs 32, 01, 837. Dohling also told the House that garbage traps have been installed in six different outfalls of the Umshyrpi river – Bridge behind Seven Set Basic School, Malki, at Filling Point, Laban, at Dubrigat, Laban, near Urban Affairs Quarter, Dhanketi and at Rilbong at a cost of Rs 7,39,653.
“The problem with these garbage traps is that when there are heavy rains they need to be cleared regularly or else the drain water spill over to the top surface. This is regularly happening in Dubrighat, Laban,” the Urban Affairs Minister informed the Meghalaya Assembly.
The purpose of these garbage traps is to prevent solid waste from being carried down stream.
Dohling also informed that 60 hotels, 19 guest houses and lodges, 37 restaurants, 14 automobile servicing centers and 11 hospitals have installed effluent treatment plants.
Moreover, 35 households located along the streams and tributaries in the city were issued with notices for direct discharge of sewage. These households are located at Macabe Road, Demseiniong, Polo Demseiniong, Upper Demseiniong and Jail Road.