Letter to BS: Namami Gange project should be run on the basis of knowledge

This refers to “Cleaning the Ganga” (October 15). If we go through the history of this project, we find there is multiplicity of authorities, lack of assistance from the state governments and dearth of monitoring that has led to the failure of cleaning the Ganga.

The Namami Gange programme should be run on the basis of knowledge and not by perception. There are a number of authorities at the state and the national levels, duplication of effort. There is a lack of administrative intent and coordination among various wings of the government. It is also mentioned that data on pollution collected from various state bodies are not correct as per report prepared by the expert committee. The government data is often ill-founded and there is hardly any relation to the reality on ground. There is always pressure on officials and bureaucrats associated with Ganga rejuvenation to perform and implement the project. 

Specialists give suggestions and recommendations to the ministries but there is no feedback. The consortium of seven Indian Institute of Technology constituted by the government had submitted its report on Ganga River Basin Management Plan 2015. It covers all aspects of cleaning Ganga that was moving at snail’s pace. A whopping Rs 220 billion has been spent so far on this national project without having targeted benefits. The recent sacrifice of G D Agarwal has highlighted the problem with the execution of projects of national importance.

Sushil Bakliwal, Jaipur

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