New Delhi: Data possessed by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) does not reflect "detectable" presence of arsenic contamination in rivers that are being monitored, including Ganga, Rajya Sabha was informed Wednesday.
In response to questions relating arsenic levels of Ganga and measures taken by Government to provide arsenic-free water to people, Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti said using alternate sources was the "most commonly" prevailing technique to deal with the problem.
"CPCB is monitoring water quality at 1,275 locations on 445 rivers including Ganga. The monitored data does not reflect any detectable presence of arsenic contamination in rivers at any monitored locations of the network," Bharti informed Rajya Sabha.
Replying to another query, Bharti informed the Government has sanctioned Rs 6,191.54 crore under National Mission for Clean Ganga programme as on September 30 this year.
Out of the same, Rs 1,501.32 crore have been released to five states Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal from where the river flows, while Rs 1,348.10 have been spent until now.
The Minister also informed the House that New Delhi is "constantly" in touch with Federal Government of Germany and its agencies for factoring the experience of Rhine river rejuvenation in cleaning of Ganga, "wherever practical".
Answering a question, she informed that the Government has already deployed a battalion of Ganga Task Force at Allahabad as part of its efforts to keep Ganga clean.
"Government has plans to raise batallions, Ganga Task Force for keeping the river clean. One battalion has already been raised and deployed in Allahabad.
"Currently, the process for providing hands on training to jawans in plantation/afforestation and to identify the suitable land parcels for preparatory and plantation activity is underway," she added.
The Minister stated sewage from cities along the river account for 75 per cent of pollution in the river.