Chhutki shut her eyes. When she
opens them, they are both big once again. She is now able to see all around. The deadly
drainpipe looks smaller, but the polluted water flowing out of it is lethal.
Baadshah: (Pointing at
some factories in the distance) Look, at those buildings. They pour all their waste
... poisonous waste into the river. All industries need water for various processes. This
water when once used cannot be used unless it is treated. Different kinds of industries
produce different kinds of waste . The water can be recycled back but usually till date
not many industries recycled the water. The release toxins
into the river water. Some of the industries are leather, textile, pulp and paper,
petroleum, and chemical factories... all this dirty water is coming from there!
Chhutki : Yes, I can see
the factory signboards quite clearly. I must write down their names . ( She takes out a
small pencil and notebook from her pocket and writes the names of a few factories.) This
is really terrible.
Baadshah: You see, Chhutki,
the river has now reached the towns. Let us go up to that little hill .(He points to a
small hill to the right .) We can see a large part of the river from there.
Chhutki : (Suddenly
spotting something in the water.) Oh look! There's a turtle in the water, he seems
to be in great trouble!
(They rush down to the river bank to find a turtle struggling for his life. He is covered
with thick black oil. They pull him out of the water and place him on a rock nearby. Then
they wipe him clean with their handkerchiefs).
Turtle : ( Coughing,
opening his eyes, and breathing deeply.) Oh, I can breathe at last. Thank
you, thank you friends, for saving me. I really thought I would not make it.
Chhutki : What's the
matter, little friend?
Turtle : Well, while
swimming about in search of food, I suddenly got covered in this huge patch of dirty, oily
waste that is thrown into our home from those factories. It is so terrible, it chokes
us, burns the eyes and throat, and smells awful. Thank you again for saving me. I shall
walk back along the bank till I find cleaner water and will then go home. (He smiles
at them and then begins to walk back slowly along the river towards his home.)
Baadshah: Oil in the water
forms a coat on the gills of fish and turtles, thereby blocking any transfer of oxygen.
Also, oil forms a layer on water and prevents sunlight and oxygen from air to enter into
the water body like river, lake,ocean, etc. It is very difficult to remove this oil from
Chhutki : Goodbye, little
friend. Take care! (They watch him go.) I'm so glad we saw him and wear able to help him
in time. But think of so many other turtles, fish, birds, and other animals and plants who
are not so lucky.
Baadshah: Yes, Chhutki.
Even my magic cannot do enough to help them all. There is just too much pollution
everywhere! And, most of it, sadly, is caused by people ... careless people. But, there is
still something we have, that can definitely help....
Chhutki : What ?
Baadshah: You, and other
caring people like you!
Chhutki : But how?
Baadshah: I am sure you
will get some ideas as you learn more. Lets move on quickly.