GS Paper 2: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors; Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the centre and states and the performance of these schemes.
The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi approved the flagship "Namami Gange" programme which integrates the efforts to clean and protect the Ganga River in a comprehensive manner. Marking a major shift in implementation, the Government is focusing on involving people living on the banks of the river to attain sustainable results. Drawing from the lesson learned from the previous implementation, the program also focuses on involving the States and grassroots levels institutions such as Urban Local Bodies and Panchayati Raj Institutions in implementation. The program would be implemented by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), and its state counterpart organizations i.e., State Program Management Groups (SPMGs). NMCG will also establish field offices wherever necessary.
Salient features of "Namami Gange" programme
Over Rs. 20,000 crore has been sanctioned in the 2014-2015 budget for the next 5 years.
Will cover 8 states, 47 towns & 12 rivers under the project.
Over 1,632-gram panchayats on the banks of Ganga to be made open defecation-free by 2022.
Several ministries are working with nodal Water Resources Ministry for this project includes - Environment, Urban Development, Shipping, Tourism and Rural Development Ministries.
Prime focus will be on involving people living on the river's banks in this project.
Under the aegis of National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) & State Program Management Groups (SPMGs) States and Urban Local Bodies and Panchayati Raj institutions will be involved in this project.
Setting river-centric urban planning process to facilitate better citizen connects, through interventions at Ghats and Riverfronts.
Expansion of coverage of sewerage infrastructure in 118 urban habitations on banks of Ganga.
Development of rational agricultural practices & efficient irrigation methods.
Ganga Knowledge Centre.
To achieve the objectives, NMCG shall carry out the following key functions namely:
Implement the work program of National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA).
Implement the World Bank supported National Ganga River Basin Project.
Coordinate and oversee the implementation of projects sanctioned by Government of India under NGRBA.
Undertake any additional work or functions as may be assigned by Ministry of Water Resources, Rural development & GJ in the area of conservation of river Ganga.
Make rules and regulations for the conduct of the affairs of the NMCG and add or amend, vary or rescind them from time to time.
Accept or to provide any grant of money, loan securities or property of any kind and to undertake and accept the management of any endowment trust, fund or donation not inconsistent with the objectives of NMCG.
Take all such action and to enter all such actions as may appear necessary or incidental for the achievements of the objectives of the NGRBA.
The key achievements under Namami Gange programme are:-
Creating Sewerage 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. Work is under construction for creating Sewerage capacity of 1187.33 (MLD). Hybrid Annuity PPP Model based two projects has been initiated for Jagjeetpur, Haridwar and Ramanna, Varanasi.
Creating River-Front Development:-28 River-Front 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.
Bio-Diversity Conservation:- Several Bio-Diversity 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. 5 Bio-Diversity center’s 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 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) at project cost of Rs.2300 Crores. Work has been commenced in 7 districts of Uttarakahnd for medicinal plants.
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. Various awareness activities through rallies, campaigns, exhibitions, shram daan, cleanliness drives, competitions, plantation drives and development and distribution of resource materials were organized and for wider publicity the mass mediums such as TV/Radio, print media advertisements, advertorials, featured articles and advertorials were published.
Industrial Effluent Monitoring:- Real Time Effluent Monitoring Stations (EMS) has been installed in 572 out of 760 Grossly Polluting Industries (GPIs). Closure notice have been issued to 135 GPIs so far and others have been given deadlines for compliance to stipulated norms and for installations of online EMS.
Ganga Gram:- Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (MoDWS) identified 1674 Gram Panchayats situated on the bank of River Ganga in 5 State (Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal. UNDP has been engaged as the executing agency for rural sanitation programme and to develop Jharkhand as a model State at an estimated cost of Rs. 127 Crore.
Relevance of the scheme
River Ganga has significant economic, environmental and cultural value in India. Rising in the Himalayas and flowing to the Bay of Bengal, the river traverses a course of more than 2,500 km through the plains of north and eastern India. The Ganga basin - which also extends into parts of Nepal, China and Bangladesh - accounts for 26 per cent of India's landmass. The Ganga also serves as one of India's holiest rivers whose cultural and spiritual significance transcends the boundaries of the basin.
Previous Year Questions
The Central Government frequently complains on the poor performance of the State Governments in eradicating suffering of the vulnerable sections of the society. Restructuring of Centrally sponsored schemes across the sectors for ameliorating the cause of vulnerable sections of population aims at providing flexibility to the States in better implementation. Critically evaluate (2013)
Electronic cash transfer system for the welfare schemes is an ambitious project to minimize corruption, eliminate wastage and facilitate reforms Comment. (2013)
The basis of providing urban amenities in rural areas (PURA) is rooted in establishing connectivity Comment. (2013)
Identify the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that are related to health. Discuss the success of the actions taken by the Government for achieving the same. (2013)
Do government’s schemes for up-lifting vulnerable and backward communities by protecting required social resources for them, lead to their exclusion in establishing businesses in urban economies? (2014)
Two parallel run schemes of the Government, viz the Adhaar Card and NPR, one as voluntary and the other as compulsory, have led to debates at national levels and also litigations. On merits, discuss whether or not both schemes need run concurrently. Analyse the potential of the schemes to achieve developmental benefits and equitable growth. (2014)
Hunger and poverty are the biggest challenges for good governance in India still today. Evaluate how far successive governments have progressed in dealing with these humongous problems. Suggest measure for improvement. (2017)
The emergence of the self-help groups (SHGs) in contemporary times points to the slow but steady withdrawal of the state from development activities.” Examine the role of the SHGs in developmental activities and the measures taken by the Government of India to promote the SHGs. (2017)