About My Project...

As a kid every time I would cross a river in India, be it the Ganga or the Yamuna or any of their tributaries, I would have a feeling that the water levels of these rivers were receding... my heart would sink seeing the industrial pollutants making their way into these rivers...

On the contrary the feeling I would get seeing these rivers close to their origins… especially the Ganga in Rishikesh is indescribable… no pollution, no signs of water level depletion … so calm and so serene… the scent of freshness in the air…

I am documenting the life around river Ganga… the life as Ganga sees and feels it... the culture the river has supported for thousands of years, the people it has sustained over the centuries, and also the human interference it has suffered over the last one century or so...

Towards that I am following the river from its origins high up in the Himalayas all the way to where it merges with the Indian Ocean. All the while I am meeting with people who have been close to the river to narrate their feelings about the river, what they feel about the part Ganga has played in the Indian civilization and culture, what we human beings have done or could do or have not done to save this mighty river…

My final aim is to narrate the whole documentary as a multimedia and a book. I invite anyone and everyone to please help me with suggestions... critique... and hospitality. I would love to hear your suggestions and incorporate them into my project.

Note: The contents of this blog including the pictures are copyrighted and may not be copied or downloaded without prior permission of Rahul Rathi.
Disclaimer: This is a personal project of Rahul Rathi. He is not responsible for the accuracy of the contents here in and may not be sited as a reference without confirming the accuracy.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Start off!!

We (My brother Lt Colonel Rajul Rathi and myself) started off from Meerut evening of Nov 10th 2009, halted at Muzaffarnagar where we would get our taxi from (arranged by my cousin Vikram Veer), and headed towards Tehri on the morning of Nov 11th.

Our plan was to reach Tehri before dawn via the town of Devprayag. It was an extra 100 km to go via Devprayag but the idea was to check out the route and take pictures on our way down. 

The day started well and we were very excited to have begun the project. Passed Roorkee on our way and reached Haridwar where we got the first glimpse of the Ganga. It being winters, the glaciers had stopped melting and there was so little water in the Ganga that I could easily see the bed of the river. That's when I realized that most of the water was being diverted through a barrage towards Har-Ki-Pauri - a very religious spot for Hindus to bathe at. Most of the water then went into the Upper Ganga Canal (A men-made canal system that runs parallel to the Ganga river, helping irrigate the land in the state of Uttrakhand and Uttar Pradesh), and some was re-diverted back into the Ganga (if there was water in excess, mainly during the monsoons).

We carried on towards Rishikesh and that's where the Ganga looked very majestic and beautiful. It was wide and full of water. Rishikesh is a bustling holy town full of tourists from all over the world - many of them come looking for enlightenment, and most just for fun.

As we drove by Rishikesh we noticed a completely dry river … later we were told that it's a seasonal river and collects only rain waters.

1 comment:

  1. In fact the the Upper ganga canal was part of ther irrigation project initiated by the Britis in mid 1800's. The Thomson College of Civil Engineering as the IIT Roorkee (University of Roorke) was known at that time was established to prepare Civil Engineers for constructing and maintaing the canal system. There are two canals - The Upper Ganga and The Lower Ganga canals.. You can find a concise description at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ganga_canal