Every year at this time of year in India, a festival is held in honor of the Hindu sun god. People go into a river full of bubbles and perform religious ceremonies, but in fact, there are many voices of concern even in the local area because the foam is a substance that is not good for the body.
Reporter Jung Joon-hyung will tell you.
The Yamuna River, which runs through downtown New Delhi, India’s capital, is covered with white foam.
After entering the river, the women wash their hair in the foam and wash their bodies with water.
In celebration of the Hindu festival of the sun god, they are immersing themselves in the river and performing a religious ceremony.
Although it looks like snow, these bubbles are toxic pollutants.
It was caused by untreated sewage and industrial wastewater from nearby dyeing plants flowing into the river.
However, some Hindus are immersed in the river even though they know it is polluted.
[뉴델리 주민 : 강물이 극도로 오염됐다는 것을 알지만, 선택의 여지가 없습니다. 태양신 축제 때 강물 속에서 몸을 씻는 것이 의식이기 때문입니다.]
[뉴델리 주민 : 오염된 강물이 두렵다면 어떻게 기도를 드리겠습니까. (건강이 중요하지 않습니까?) 축제는 1년에 한 번만 있기 때문에 의식을 수행해야만 합니다.]
The foam contains large amounts of toxic substances such as ammonia and phosphate, which can cause respiratory and skin problems.
The Indian government has taken various measures, such as removing bubbles by mobilizing ships, but it is not enough to completely remove the pollutants.
[바룬 굴라티/시민운동가 : 야무나강으로 유입되는 더러운 물이 어디서 나옵니까? 강 오염의 책임은 인도 정부와 하수처리장에 있습니다.]
In New Delhi, people are suffering from severe air pollution that has reached smog.
(Video editing: Jo Moo-hwan)