Dehradun: The disposal of chemical colours discharged from various factories into rivers can now easily be treated- courtesy a ‘fungus’ that thrives on it. The Forest Research Institute (FRI) has discovered a fungus called ‘Ganoderma Applanatum’, which consumes chemical colours within five days.

The chemical colours are usually used in textile industry that endanger acquatic life in rivers, pollutes underground water and affects the fertility of soil.

With an ignorant attitude of the industries towards treating the toxic waste, the need for a better viable solution to the disposal of chemical colours was deeply felt.

The efforts of the Pathology Division of the FRI discovered the fungus which consumes these poisonous colours by releasing lackage, gilenej and magnese enzymes into the water. It is found on plants and causes heart rot disease in them.

The discovery needs applause as it is not an achievement of a professional scientist but three researchers Nutan Gupta, Anand and Jyoti under the guidance of scientists working with the division.

The researchers added the fungus to separate flasks filled with red and blue chemical waters. On checking the water after five days, the fungus had consumed the whole of the chemical colour.

Dr NSK Harsh, Head, Pathology Division, FRI said, “The mechanism of consumption of colours by the fungus is surprising. We are planning to develop the fungus in collaboration with the mechanical engineers to be utilized at industrial level.”