New Delhi : The Empowered Steering Committee (ESC) of the National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA) chaired by Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, and members from the Ministries of Environment and Forests, Finance, Urban Development and Power and state governments of the five Ganga Basin states has approved projects for development of ghats and crematoria in the stretch from Haridwar to Uttarakhand Border, Garhmukteshwar in Uttar Pradesh, Buxar, Hajipur and Sonepur of Bihar, Sahibganj, Rajmahal and Kanhaiya Ghat of Jharkhand and Delhi and afforestation along the banks of river Ganga.
The total estimated cost of the projects is Rs. 2446 crore. These projects have been carved to improve the facilities of ghats and crematoria for reduction of pollution load into river Ganga. All the projects will be implemented under centrally sponsored scheme of Namami Gange and Government of India would bear 100 percent costs.
ESC also appraised the Detailed Project Report on ‘Forestry Intervention in River Ganga’. The project will focus on augmenting water flow together with abating the pollutants loads of river Ganga through appropriate forestry intervention along the banks of river Ganga.
The major project components are implementation of Forestry Interventions in Five States at the banks of River Ganga; strengthening Knowledge Management and National Capacity for Forestry Interventions and conservation of Rivers and scaling up and replication of successful models of Forestry interventions and Riverscape. The estimated cost of the project is Rs. 2294 crore for the duration of five years.
Appraisals of all the recommended projects was carried out by Third Party Appraisal committee constituted by Consortium of IITs and for Forestry Interventions of Ganga by the committee constituted under the Chairmanship of Director General, Ministry of Environment and Forests.
It may be recalled that Union Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Sushri Uma Bharti has been reviewing the progress of Namami Gange programme on daily basis to ensure that the project moves on the mission mode as envisaged. A new Mission Director has also been appointed in NMCG recently. The post was lying vacant for the past few months. (ANI)