The Union Cabinet has set up a new authority, with more powers, to supervise the clean Ganga mission and take punitive action against those who pollute the river.
The Cabinet approved the River Ganga (Rejuvenation, Protection and Management) Authorities Order, 2016, laying down a new institutional structure for policy and implementation as well as empowering the new National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCA) to work in an independent and accountable manner.
The new council will act as an authority replacing the existing National Ganga River Basin Authority for overall responsibility of managing the pollution prevention and rejuvenation activities of the river basin.
1. The new move will give more teeth to the NMCG in managing clean Ganga initiative and enable it to carry out its mandate efficiently. It will also ensure proper co-ordination with the local bodies and compliance with NMCG directions for pollution control in Ganga.
2. The empowered task force will ensure that the ministries, departments and state governments have an action plan to rejuvenate and protect Ganga.
3. A special focus of the revamped structure would be to maintain required ecological flows in Ganga with the aim of ensuring water quality and environmentally-sustainable development.
4. To speed up the setting up of sewerage treatment infrastructure in the Ganga basin, an innovative model based on hybrid annuity has also been approved. This will ensure that the infrastructure created under the project is operational on a sustainable basis.
The new move by the government comes following a series of not so successful initiatives, which led to Prime Minister Narendra Modi showing his dissatisfaction over Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti’s efforts in clean Ganga campaign. So, this time around, the country is hoping to see some success in cleaning up the river Ganga.
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