The photo, sent by Firdaus K. Ahmed of Ambur, Tamil Nadu, shows the river Palar (River of Milk) which has now become Pazhaar (River of Garbage). The river flows through Ambur town, with the western bank coming under Ambur municipal town limits.

There is hardly any water flow in the river thanks to the check dams upriver. People have taken advantage of this and the banks have been encroached on both sides of the river, reducing its width to 40 per cent of what it was. What remains of the river is also an eyesore since it is used as a dumping ground for mostly plastic waste material and untreated sewage from the town and the villages is also discharged into the river.

Will the authorities concerned take immediate action to restore the lost beauty of the river?

Irresponsible and insensitive citizens, apathetic, unresponsive policy makers and lax local administration are turning our planet into one huge trash dump. Is this the legacy we want the next generation to inherit? Time is running out but it is still not late to stop and reverse this degradation. Make the authorities more responsive and if possible proactive. Join hands with us to create awareness, instigate official response and do our bit for the environment.

If you have similar photos of environmental degradation in your neighbourhood, do send them to us, with information about the place where it was taken, to: