River ecology: an assessment of the impact of COVID-19 lockdown

Rivers are India’s lifeline. Our ancient civilisation developed on the Indo-Gangetic plain. Across the length and breadth of the sub-continent rivers have brought prosperity to communities and societies. News of revival of Nature has encouraged us to take up this evidence-based study on River Ecology: An assessment of the impact of COVID-19 lockdown. The report has emerged from interactions held with respondents across multiple locations on ten major rivers flowing through different states. The study has captured people’s immediate reactions and perceptions about the impact of the shutdown of industries and decrease in pollutants. The evidence shared by local communities confirms the reports mentioned above. Nature’s resilience is showing with just a few weeks of the shutdown of human activity that generated pollution. This is great learning for all of us, especially for the planners to note how we intend to bring change in our rivers. The hard work for this study, with all the limitations it has, will be helpful for future planning of river rejuvenation.