UP govt indifferent to Ganga conservation: Cong
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Last Updated: Thursday, December 22, 2011, 22:47
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 Gorakhpur.

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 responsibility."

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.


First Published: Thursday, December 22, 2011, 22:47

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