Enteropathogenic bacteria in river Ganges in Varanasi

Indian J Pathol Microbiol. 1993 Oct;36(4):425-32.


A bacteriological study of the river Ganges in Varanasi was carried out from December 1985 to November 1987. In all 407 water samples were collected, 335 from bathing ghats and 72 from sewage openings and were examined for the presence of enteropathogenic bacteria. Vibrio cholerae 0-1 (1.72%), Non 0-1 Vibrio cholera (3.69%), Vibrio fluvialis (0.74%), Aeromonas sp. (0.49%), Plesiomonas sp. (0.25%), Salmonella sp. (0.98%) and Shigella sp. (1.23%) were isolated from both ghats and sewage openings along with Pseudomonas sp., Proteus sp., E. coli., etc. This indicates that water of the river Ganges is potentially hazardous to the health of the bathers and is not suitable for drinking. The discharge of raw sewage into the river and its diversion beyond the city, downstream, by installation of pumps have failed to improve the quality of water.

MeSH terms

  • Enterobacteriaceae / isolation & purification*
  • Fresh Water*
  • India
  • Pseudomonas / isolation & purification*
  • Sewage
  • Water Microbiology*


  • Sewage