The Centre has set a deadline to complete all sanctioned works of Namami Gange project by 2022. So far, a total of 305 projects have been sanctioned at an estimated cost of Rs 28,613.75 crore, out of which 109 projects have been completed and made operational. The rest of the projects are at various stages of implementation, Minister of State for Jal Shakti & Social Justice and Empowerment Rattan Lal Kataria informed the Lok Sabha today in reply to a question.
The minister told the House that cleaning of rivers is a continuous process. Close monitoring and efforts are being made to complete all the sanctioned projects by March 2022, creating required sewage treatment capacity. Under Namami Gange Programme, diverse set of interventions like pollution abatement activities including sewage, industrial effluent, solid waste, etc, riverfront management, aviral dhara, rural sanitation, afforestation, biodiversity conservation and public participation have been taken up for cleaning and rejuvenation of river Ganga, he further informed.
He said that 97 cities/town have been identified along river Ganga which roughly discharge 2953 million litres per day (MLD) (Year 2016) in the river. “For Ganga stem cities/town, projects have been taken up to create 3308 MLD sewage treatment capacity against the generation of 2953 MLD (Year 2016),” the Jal Shakti Minister said. “The sewage treatment capacity in Ganga main stem towns have now increased from 1305 MLD (Year 2014) to 1954 MLD, excluding 410 MLD sewage treatment through East Kolkata Wetland,” he added.
He also informed the House that as per detailed progress report (DPR) prepared by Forest Research Institute (FRI), Dehradun, an area of 1,34,106 hectares is to be brought under plantation in the five Ganga states – Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal by December 2020. The minister said that the DPR prescribed 43 numbers of models under four major heads namely Natural landscape, Agricultural landscape, Urban landscape and Conservation intervention. Since the launch of Namami Gange Programme an area of 30,761 hectares has been planted/being planted during the period 2016-20, he added.