Faced with the herculean task of fulfilling the BJP-led government’s promise of cleaning the Ganga, the Centre needed nothing short of a silver bullet to meet the deadline for the project, which some allege, is being implemented at a snail’s pace.
This sluggish implementation is ostensibly the reason behind transport minister Nitin Gadkari, considered one of the top-performing ministers, getting the additional charge of water resources ministry, sources say.
The ministry is tasked with the responsibility of executing the project dear to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Gadkari replaces Uma Bharti, who has now been given the charge of drinking water and sanitation, in the rejigged Modi Cabinet.
The Centre has set a target of 2018 for cleaning the mighty river, which touches lives of millions of Indians in one way or the other.
According to sources in the water resources ministry, a total of 160 projects, worth around Rs 12,500 crore, have been approved under the Namami Gange Mission — a Rs 20,000-crore project for cleaning the river.
These include developing river fronts, setting up sewage treatment plants and construction of ghats and crematoria, among others. Till now, only 40 projects have been completed, the sources said.
The BJP coming to power in Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, two of the five key Ganga-basin states, in March did not help the project gain the expected momentum, they added.
Bihar, West Bengal and Jharkhand are other three Ganga- basin states.
In Bihar, the BJP returned to power only towards the end of July. Read More…
Credit By: TOI
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