Assessment of Spatial and Temporal Variations in Water Quality Dynamics of River Ganga in Varanasi

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Environmental Pollution Impact Assessment Laboratory, Department of Botany, Udai Pratap Autonomous College, Varanasi.-221002, India

2 Environmental Science Division, Department of Civil Engineering I.I.T. (B.H.U.), Varanasi-221005, India.


River Ganga is one of the prime sacred National Rivers of India, closely associated with economic, social, and cultural heritage of Indian people. Recently, it has been subjected to immense degradation and pollution as a result of receiving huge amounts of domestic and industrial wastewater as well as religious ritual activities and surface runoff. The present study attempts to study spatial and temporal changes in water quality of River Ganga while calculating its Water Quality Index (WQI) by analyzing 9 physico-chemical, 7 trace metal, and 4 microbiological parameters at eleven sampling stations, on the basis of River Ganga index of Ved Prakash. Thus it can assess water’s suitability for drinking and irrigation purposes along with other human uses. The study is directed towards the use of WQI to describe pollution level in the river for a period of 1 year (from January to December 2014). It has been shown that index values as per CPCB class range between medium to good, while the ones as per NSF Index range from bad to good water quality. The study also identifies critical pollutants, affecting the river water quality within its course through the city. Finally, pH, DO, BOD, DO, EC, and FC have been found to be critical parameters for the stretch in each season of this research.


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