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Utilisation of Funds for Ganga River cleaning

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A Group of Secretaries (GoS) from key Ministries comprising of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Urban Development, Drinking Water and Sanitation, Rural Development, Tourism, and Shipping had worked together during 2014-15 to develop a comprehensive action plan for Ganga Rejuvenation. One High Level Task Force (HLTF) on Ganga has been constituted under the chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary to facilitate interaction among Ministries/Departments and State Governments and to ensure effective coordination and implementation of the programme. Government of India has constituted Empowered Task Force (ETF) in 2016 on river Ganga under the chairmanship of Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation consisting of Secretary of concerned Ministries and Chief Secretary of states and CEO, Niti Aayog.

An amount of Rs. 773.59 crore has been released by National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) against Rs. 1,958 crore provided by Government of India during the Financial Year 2014-15 and 2015-16. The physical progress has not been commensurate with the financial targets fixed, because of the fact that in initial phase, pace of expenditure was slow as proper planning was needed to take up the projects in a scientific and planned manner. Pace of expenditure would increase with the start of the large number of projects sanctioned in recent times.

With the constitution of NMCG as an Authority in terms of order dated 7.10.2016, the National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA) has been dissolved.

The said order provides for a National Council for Rejuvenation, Protection and Management of River Ganga, also called as National Ganga Council under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister, with representation of Union Ministers of concerned departments and Chief Ministers of the five Ganga States besides others.

Certain measures have been initiated to expedite the implementation process. National mission for Clean Ganga have been restructured and strengthened recently so that it is empowered to discharge its functions in an independent and accountable manner and also to sanction and complete various projects on fast track. Under Namami Gange Programme, provision has been kept for long term (10-15 years) operation & maintenance of the assets created so as to ensure that the assets created are permanent and operate in a sustainable manner. Regular monitoring of these projects is being done by NMCG. Reviews are being held up with State Programme Management Groups (SPMGs)/ Central Public Sector Undertakings (CPSUs) on regular basis to expedite these projects and to comply with the direction of National Green Tribunal (NGT). In segment A of Ganga (as per NGT), all the projects related to STPs have been sanctioned.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Thu, March 08 2018. 17:09 IST
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