The River Yamuna, swelled by unprecedented levels of water, has caused severe flooding in low-lying areas along its banks, including parts of the national capital, Delhi. The floodwaters have reached areas that have remained untouched for decades, surprising residents and authorities alike. One notable location affected by the flooding is the iconic Red Fort, which served as the seat of power in Delhi for centuries.
On Thursday, floodwaters from the Yamuna made their way to a section of the Ring Road between Red Fort and Salimgarh Fort. Distressing visuals shared on social media depicted knee-deep water near the northern walls of the Mughal-era fort. The juxtaposition of these images with historical Mughal-era paintings showcasing the same area when the Yamuna flowed naturally has sparked discussions about the river reclaiming its natural course.
The flooding of the Red Fort and the subsequent sharing of historical paintings on social media have led many to reflect on the encroachment and urbanization of the Yamuna’s floodplains over time. Comparisons between the past and present images have prompted individuals to question the consequences of filling up and converting the natural floodplains into a concrete jungle.
The deluge serves as a reminder of the ecological importance of preserving and restoring natural watercourses and floodplains. It prompts discussions on the necessity of adopting sustainable practices and mitigating the impact of human activities on river systems. The flooding of historically significant sites, such as the Red Fort, highlights the need to strike a balance between development and conservation to protect our cultural heritage and the environment.
As authorities assess the extent of the damage caused by the flooding and work towards flood management and prevention strategies, it is crucial to address the larger issue of river conservation and sustainable urban planning. Efforts should be made to restore the natural hydrological systems and maintain the delicate balance between human development and the preservation of ecological resources.
The current situation should serve as a wake-up call for policymakers, environmentalists, and citizens alike to prioritize river conservation and the restoration of natural watercourses. By learning from the past and embracing sustainable practices, we can work towards ensuring a healthier and more resilient future for our rivers and the communities that depend on them.
Yamuna during Yamuna
Mughal Period today
— Adv Abhishek Gaharwar (@AbhishekGaharwr) July 14, 2023
In the face of this extraordinary flooding event, our thoughts are with those affected by the floods, and we hope for a swift recovery for all impacted areas.