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Namami Gange and National Mission for Ganga (NMCG)

Namami Gange and National Mission for Ganga (NMCG)


  • Ganga basin is considered as the world’s populous river basin and is home for more than 600 million urban rural Indian populations.
  • With that the incidence of deep and multifaceted poverty is high in the basin and the water and sanitation infrastructure is either absent or unsatisfactory.
  • The Ganga basin generates approximately 40 percent of the country’s GDP and is a valuable environmental and economic resource for India.
  • The water quality challenges vary across the course of the river. It changes from Gangotri to Rishikesh, from Rishikesh to Kanpur, Allahabad, Patna and Farakka And in the parts of the Sundarbans.

Past efforts to clean Ganga      

  • Ganga Action Plan 1985- GAP I
    • The main focus of the plan was on interception, diversion and treatment of sewage generated from these 25 Class I cities of Uttar Pradesh.
    • The plan continued for several years without achieving any improvement in river water quality.
  • Ganga Action Plan II 1993- GAP II
    • It is still under progress in five states of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal.
    • Through the provision of GAP I and GAP II, interception, diversion and treatment of sewage of more than 37 cities were established.
    • The plan also identified grossly polluting industries and made obligatory to install the effluent treatment plants.
    • These efforts made a beginning and were able to highlight the magnitude of problem of pollution in the Ganges, it had several constrains and limitations.

Namami Gange Programme(NGP)

  • Namami Gange Programme is an Integrated Conservation Mission, approved as a ‘Flagship Programme’ by the Union Government in June 2014 to accomplish the twin objectives of effective abatement of pollution and conservation and rejuvenation of National River Ganga.
  • It is being operated under the Department of Water Resources,River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti.
  • The program is being implemented by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), and its state counterpart organizations i.e., State Program Management Groups (SPMGs).
  • NMCG is the implementation wing of National Ganga Council (set in 2016; which replaced the National Ganga River Basin Authority (NRGBA).
  • It has a Rs. 20,000-crore, centrally-funded, non-lapsable corpus and consists of nearly 288 projects.

Main pillars of the NGP

  • Afforestation
  • Biodiversity
  • Sewage Treatment Infrastructure
  • Ganga Gram
  • River-Surface Cleaning
  • River-Front Development
  • Industrial Effluent Monitoring
  • Public Awareness

Key achievements under NGP   | Namami Gange and National Mission for Ganga (NMCG)

  • Creating Sewage Treatment Capacity: 63 sewerage management projects under implementation in the States of Uttarakhand,Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal.12 new sewerage management Projects Launched in these states. Hybrid Annuity PPP Model based two projects has been initiated for Jagjeetpur, Haridwar and Ramanna, Varanasi.
  • Creating Riverfront Development: 28 Riverfront Development projects and 33 Entry level Projects for construction, modernization and renovation of 182 Ghats and 118 crematoria has been initiated.
  • River Surface Cleaning: River Surface cleaning for collection of floating solid waste from the surface of the Ghats and River and its disposal are afoot and pushed into service at 11 locations.
  • Biodiversity Conservation:- Several Biodiversity conservation projects are namely: Biodiversity Conservation and Ganga Rejuvenation, Fish and Fishery Conservation in Ganga River, Ganges River Dolphin Conservation Education Programme has been initiated. five Biodiversity centers at Dehradun, Narora, Allahabad, Varanasi and Barrackpore has been developed for restoration of identified priority species.
  • Afforestation:- Forestry interventions for Ganga through Wildlife Institute of India; Central Inland Fisheries Research Institute and the Centre for Environment Education has been initiated.Forestry interventions for Ganga has been executed as per the Detailed Project Report prepared by Forest Research Institute, Dehradun for a period of 5 years (2016-2021).
  • Public Awareness:- A series of activities such as events, workshops, seminars and conferences and numerous IEC activities were organized to make a strong pitch for public outreach and community participation in the programme. Gange Theme song was released widely and played on digital media to enhance the visibility of the programme.
  • Industrial Effluent Monitoring:- Regulation and enforcement through regular and surprise inspections of Grossly Polluting Industries (GPIs) are carried out for compliance verification against stipulated environmental norms. The GPIs are also inspected on annual basis for compliance verification of the pollution norms and process modification, wherever required through third party technical institutes.
  • Ganga Gram:- Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (MoDWS) identified 1674 Gram Panchayats situated on the bank of River Ganga in 5 States (Uttarakhand,Uttar Pradesh,Bihar,Jharkhand,West Bengal). Fund has been released to Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (MoDWS) for construction of toilets in some Gram Panchayats of 5 Ganga Basin States. Consortium of 7 IITs has been engaged in the preparation of Ganga River basin Plan and 65 villages has been adopted by 13 IITs to develop as model villages. UNDP has been engaged as the executing agency for rural sanitation programme and to develop Jharkhand as a model State.

National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG)

  • National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) is the implementation wing of National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA).
  • The area of operation of NMCG shall be the Ganga River Basin, including the states through which Ganga flows, as well as the National Capital Territory of Delhi.
  • The aims and objectives of NMCG is to accomplish the mandate of National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA)
    • To ensure effective abatement of pollution and rejuvenation of the river Ganga by adopting a river basin approach to promote inter-sectoral co-ordination for comprehensive planning and management.
    • To maintain minimum ecological flows in the river Ganga with the aim of ensuring water quality and environmentally sustainable development.
  • The World Bank will support the Government of India by providing technical and financial assistance.Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)is supporting one project on Ganga in Varanasi.Several foreign governments and institutions like IWMI, Thames Authority, Murray- Darling Authority have also been requested to provide the support.

Ganga River Basin Management Plan

  • Consortiums of seven IITs have developed a comprehensive Ganga River Basin Management Plan (GRBMP).
  • The proposed plan makes suggestion and recommendations in the form of eight mission:
    • To ensure zero discharge policy for all the polluting industries.
    • Aviral Dhara– continuous uninterrupted
    • Nirmal Dhara- un polluted clean flow
    • Ecological restoration
    • Sustainable agriculture
    • Geological safeguarding
    • Basin protection against disaster
    • River hazard management and environmental knowledge- building and sensations.

Conclusion | Namami Gange and National Mission for Ganga (NMCG)

  • Specific anthropogenic activities that should be prohibited, restricted, or promoted in NRGB have been identified in GRBEMP.
  • Their implementation and future development would require the coordinated efforts and cooperation of government and non-government institutions, key stakeholders, and civil society.
  • There should be a proper implementation, monitoring, review, and evaluation of environmental problems and pertinent interventions on a long-term basis.
  • These components with good synergy with the cherished objectives of securing clean and continuous flow in the Ganges will restore the old glory.



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