Gold in Uttar Pradesh: 269 villages here are afflicted by fluorosis caused by air and water pollution

Sonbhadra: Sonbhadra district of Uttar Pradesh was in news for gold reserves, but about 10,000 villagers of 269 villages here have become disabled due to fluorosis reportedly caused by air and water pollution.

Despite the intervention of the National Green Authority (NGT), the state government or district administration has not taken any effective steps.

Some of the patients afflicted by fluorosis are Ramdhani Sharma (55), Vindhyachal Sharma (58), Salil Patel (18), Guddu (15), Sheela (20), from Nai Basti of Padrach village panchayat of Chopan development block and Sunil Gupta (35) and Usha (16) from Chilka Dad village.

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Jagat Narayan Vishwakarma, an environmentalist associated with the NGO ‘Vanvasi Seva Ashram’, said, “A team of researchers from New Delhi’s Centre for Science and Environment came here in 2012 and took samples of people’s blood, nails and hair. They found that the level of mercury in the samples was high.”

Vishwakarma said, “In the month of November 2018, a camp was organised on the initiative of the Director General of Health, in which the quantity of fluoride in the people was found to be 12 milligram per litre through a urine test, which higher than the set parameters.”

“The complaint of poor air quality and fluoride in water was filed in the NGT, but the administration is not following the instructions of the NGT,” said Vishwakarma.