Ranjit Rai (30) has been earning his living for the past 10 years. Now, he wants to settle down and have a family of his own. The only hurdle in his way of tying the nuptial knot is that his family can not find a bride for him.
Similar is the case with Sandeep Rai (27) and Jitendra Rai (25), who have been waiting for the wedding bells to ring but alas!
All are residents of Chatro village of Giridih and they blame it on pollution in the area that stops the families to marry off their daughters to people living here. "Koi ladki dena hi nahi chahta hai. Ladko ke pass naukri hai per shaadi nahi ho rahi hai (No one wants to marry their daughter here. The boys have jobs but are not getting married)," said Ram Ratan Rai, a senior villager.
Chatro has 13 sponge iron units. The soot from these factories pollutes the ponds and wells apart from endangering the plants and trees. Similar is the case in adjacent Gangapur and Mahuatand villages also.
"Whatever we inhale, eat or drink are polluted. In the past two years, majority of the children has been born with physical disabilities. In Chatro, Gangapur and Mahuatand the total number of such children is 11," said Ram Ratan.
Telegraph 2009 May 14
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