UP govt indifferent to Ganga conservation: Cong

Union Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan accused UP govt of being indifferent to implementation of Centre`s River Ganga conservation programme.

Updated: Dec 22, 2011, 22:47 PM IST

New Delhi: Union Environment Minister
Jayanthi Natarajan on Thursday accused Uttar Pradesh Government of
being indifferent to implementation of the Centre`s River
Ganga conservation programme.
"In last two years, the Ministry has sanctioned several
projects for conservation of river Ganga and lakes like
Ramgarh Tal at Gorakhpur. Hundreds of crores have been
released to Uttar Pradesh for implementation of these
projects," Natarajan told reporters here.

"I hear that the state government has not used the money
properly. So our efforts, all our plans to clean river Ganga
which flows to important parts of UP have not been able to
succeed because of the indifference shown by the state
government with regard to pollution," she said.

Natarajan, who has also written a letter to Mayawati in
this regard, asked her to direct State Pollution Control Board
officials to take steps to curb pollution in Aami River in
Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi had received
complaints from villagers about industrial pollution in Aami
River while he was touring eastern Uttar Pradesh in July.

The Environment Minister said her Ministry had received
"huge complaints" regarding pollution of rivers and lake water
particularly on the Aami River.

She said teams have gone from the Central Pollution
Control Board to study the pollution level in the water
flowing through river Aami, "although it is main duty of State
Pollution Control Board which has completely failed in its

Natarajan, who in her letter to the Chief Minister has
raised the issue of pollution in Aami river, said the
pollution was a result of direct drainage from the Gorakhpur
Industrial Development Area and the non-working of sewage
treatment plants.

"Final and a very comprehensive inspection was conducted
by the Central Pollution Control Board in the first week of
December. And to our shock we found that water quality was
almost toxic in the river," she said.

In the letter dated December 19, Natarajan has noted that
due to discharge of effluents from industries, the groundwater
in nearby villages like Kalka, Jalheri etc was found unfit for
drinking purpose. Citing the CPCB report, she said there were
six major water polluting industries which are contributing to
pollution load in the river.

CPCB has already issued directions for enforcing
corrective measures under Environment (Protection) Act 1986,
she said.