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The plight of Najafgarh drain in NCT of Delhi, India: assessment of the sources, statistical water quality evaluation, and fate of water pollutants

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2022 Jul 23. doi: 10.1007/s11356-022-21710-z. Online ahead of print.


The Najafgarh drain is the first major drain that joins the Yamuna River at Wazirabad in Delhi, India, and is known to contribute to the maximum pollution load to this river. The drain is originally an extension of the Sahibi River and was intentionally constructed as a canal to carry stormwater, but presently, it is carrying more of sewage, agricultural, and industrial effluents received through various small and large secondary drains. The present study has analyzed the water quality status of this interconnected system, i.e., the Najafgarh drain, its associated secondary drains, and the Yamuna River for physicochemical parameters (n = 16), microbiological parameter (n = 1), and heavy metal concentrations (n = 8). The analysis of the surface water samples collected during pre- and post-monsoon seasons showed that secondary drain discharges significantly impacted the water quality of the Najafgarh drain, which in turn affected the Yamuna River. Out of the eight selected secondary drains for this study, the Goyla dairy outlet came out as the most polluted site in terms of organic pollutants while the Basaidarapur drain was loaded with heavy metal contaminants. Statistical tools comprising hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA), Pearson’s correlation, and principal component analysis (PCA) were further implemented on the water quality dataset for a better understanding of the possible sources of contamination for organic and inorganic pollutants in the selected sampling sites. The present study, thus, might help in providing key highlights to the policymakers for effective regulation and management of the point source discharges in Najafgarh drain, which will ultimately restrict its pollution loadings in Yamuna River, Delhi, and also help in the restoration of this important water body.

PMID:35871193 | DOI:10.1007/s11356-022-21710-z

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