New Delhi: Nearly 80 per cent of urban sewage is left untreated which is "killing" Indian rivers, a study has said.
According to the study, conducted by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), only 20 per cent of the 40,000 odd million litres of sewage is treated every day, "creating a ticking health bomb in India".
The study titled `Excreta Does Matter`, released at the second Anil Agarwal dialogue on water and waste water management here, blamed weak enforcement of environmental laws, rapid urban development and lack of awareness about dangers of sewage for the water pollution.
It finds most cities lacking basic policy direction on how best to tackle issues of demand, supply and treatment of water, and management of sewage.
Meanwhile, Vice President Hamid Ansari at the event said, "There is a serious lack of foresight in urban sewage and wastewater management in the country."
This has led to a situation where India, which has the capacity to treat one third of its sewage, can actually treat only one-fifth, he said.
Leading environmentalist and CSE head Sunita Narain said, "Cities plan for water but forget about their waste. More water equals more waste...Cities have no clue how they will treat it, clean rivers...78 per cent of our sewage is officially untreated."