Union Minister for Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Thursday (25 November) launched the River Cities Alliance (RCA), a dedicated platform for river cities in India to ideate, discuss and exchange information for sustainable management of urban rivers.
The Union Minister also unveiled the Urban River Management Plan for Kanpur City.
The River Cities Alliance will focus on three broad themes- Networking, Capacity Building and Technical Support. The Secretariat of the Alliance will be set up at the National Institute for Urban Affairs (NIUA), with National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG)’s support.
The participating cities in the River Cities Alliance are Haridwar, Rishikesh, Kanpur, Ayodhya, Patna, Howrah, Ayodhya, Varanasi, Prayagraj, etc. from Ganga basin states and Aurangabad, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bhubaneshwar, Pune, Udaipur, Vijayawada, etc. from non-Ganga basin states.
In the meeting of the National Ganga Council held at Kanpur in December 2019, the prime minister had highlighted the need for a new river centric thinking in planning for cities on the banks of rivers. Subsequently, NMCG and NIUA have collaborated to launch the RCA.
The primary objective of RCA is to provide the member cities with a platform to discuss and exchange information on aspects that are vital for sustainable management of urban rivers, such as minimizing their water footprint, reducing impacts on river and water bodies, capitalizing on natural, intangible, architectural heritage and associated services and develop self-sufficient, self-sustainable water resources through recycling, reuse strategy.
“The Alliance cities will work towards adopting and localizing national policies and instruments with key river-related directions, prepare their Urban River Management Plans and develop city-specific sectoral strategies that are required for sustainable urban river management,” the Ministry of Jal Shakti said.
“The Alliance gives opportunities to these cities to strengthen governance aspects for river cities and improves their liveability to attract external economic investments, access state of the art knowledge and frameworks as well as an opportunity to serve as the site for unique demonstration projects which will be implemented by NIUA and NMCG,” it added.
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