Lucknow / Dec 14, 2019
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today chaired the maiden meeting of the National Ganga Council in Kanpur.
The Council is mandated with superintending pollution prevention and rejuvenation of River Ganga basin, including Ganga and its tributaries.
The meeting espoused the agenda of reinforcing the importance of a ‘Ganga-centric’ approach in all departments of the concerned states as well as relevant central ministries.
Earlier, the PM was received on his arrival by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath. The meeting was also attended by the union ministers for Jal Shakti, environment, agriculture and rural development, health, urban affairs, power, tourism, shipping, apart from the CMs of UP and Uttarakhand, deputy CM of Bihar and Niti Aayog vice chairman.
Modi observed Ganga was the holiest river and its rejuvenation should embody a shining example of cooperative federalism.
He noted a lot had been accomplished since his government took up ‘Namami Gange’ in 2014 as a comprehensive initiative integrating the government efforts with the aim of pollution abatement, conservation and rejuvenation of Ganga.
For the first time, the Centre had committed Rs 20,000 crore for the period 2015-20 to the five states through which Ganga traverses, to ensure adequate water flow. Rs 7,700 crore had already been spent towards the construction of new sewage treatment plants.
The Government has set up Clean Ganga Fund (CGF) to facilitate contributions from individuals, NRIs and corporate entities for funding Ganga rejuvenation projects.
Meanwhile, Modi donated Rs 16.53 crore to the CGF from the amount realised from auction of gifts he received since 2014 and the prize money of the Seoul Peace prize.