For my research topic I am focussing on urban development, in particular water quality and water supply. With past and recent data, I want to develop some scenarios referring to the future development of the cities of Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) and Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh). Therefore it is required to take water samples from different study areas all around the cities which are tested in the laboratory in detail. I take the water from public hand pumps, taps, rivers, lakes and private bore wells so I can cover nearly all sources where people in India get their water from.
Varanasi, situated at the western bank of the river Ganga, is known as one of the oldest cities in India and the holiest Tīrtha (pilgrimage site) for Hindus. In the Hinduistic faith, taking a bath in the holy river Ganga or even die in Varanasi is most desirable. This is why the city is visited by many pilgrims each day and while sitting on one of over 100 ghats, you can see how they take their ritual bath to get sanctified. This essay is a short introduction about the importance of water as a symbolism referring to death in Varanasi. Read more »