Use Ganga water to treat coronavirus: BHU professor

ST Staff
Friday, 22 May 2020

Professor UK Choudhary, a former professor of civil engineering at IIT in Banaras Hindu University (BHU) says that water from Ganga river can help battle coronavirus

Prof UK Choudhary is a former professor of civil engineering at IIT in Banaras Hindu University (BHU) and also a river engineer. He now has said that the sensible use of river technology can help resolve the COVID-19 outbreak as well as the plight of river Ganga.

Choudhary, Founder of Ganga Research Centre at IIT (BHU), said, “The Ganga water contains a significantly higher proportion of bacteriophages - a kind of virus that kill bacteria. Our ancient scriptures like Vedas, Puranas and Upanishads say that Ganga jal is medicinal water. Scientists later found that Ganga water has bacteriophages capable of killing pathogens.”

“Let us analyse the source of bacteriophages. If we take three rivers of Himalayan origin having sources at different heights -the Ganga (Gomukh), Yamuna (Yamunotri) and the Sone river, we find the colours of waters are different. The whitish colour of Ganga water, the greenish colour of Yamuna water and the brownish colour of Sone water is also indicative. As Gomukh is the highest among the three, its water comes from the lowest depth of aquifer as compared to Yamunotri and Sone river,” he described.

“Thus, the quality of river water is proportional to the height of the origin point. This defines the genetic character of Ganga water. The balanced flow of this water in the entire length of the Ganga defines the medicinal property of Ganga water,” he explained.

The professor said that the bacteriophages present in the holy river could curtail the spread of the infection through soil, air and water. He recommended that the idea is to reserve the medicinal value of the Ganga water and to utilise it to battle COVID-19.

The method can be functioned after opening the gates of all the dams. In such way, the volume of bacteriophage will be improved in water, making it more effective against pathogens.

“With increasing diffusion of bacteriophages in water and soil, the spread of coronavirus will be impacted and reduced. This methodology and technique can also help maintain the quality of Ganga water later when the problem of Corona ends,” he concluded.


The lockdown enforced due to the novel coronavirus has enabled India’s holy river Ganga to breathe. The water in Ganga recently was declared fit enough for drinking after decades. The water quality of river at Har-ki-Pauri, in Haridwar, Uttarakhand was declared fit to drink. Water at Har-ki-Pauri was tested by the Uttarakhand Environment Protection and Pollution Control Board.

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