This NGT order changes everything about cleaning river Ganga

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The green panel directed all authorities concerned that various projects including setting up of a sewage treatment plant and cleaning of drains should be completed within two years and asked the Uttar Pradesh government to shift its tanneries from Jajmau in Kanpur to another place within six months.

The country's top green bench, in its latest decision to save the Ganga, has banned the dumping of any kind of waste within 500 metres of the river's edge; anyone caught littering the Ganga will be charged a fine of Rs 50,000. Out of this, Rs 4864.48 has been spent till June 30 this year, leaving an unspent balance of Rs 1924.30 crore.

In a strict move to save the Ganga River from further pollution, the National Green Tribunal, on Thursday has banned dumping waste near 500 meters of the holy river.

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The NGT also observed that there are fundamental errors in planning and regulation that have led to the failure of the cleaning of Ganga.

The NGT also directed the governments in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand to formulate guidelines for religious activities on the ghats of Ganga or its tributaries.

"Such mining should be permitted only after a detailed and comprehensive assessment of the annual replenishment of sand and gravel in the river bed and ensuring that the longitudinal and lateral connectivity of the river is not disturbed and that only quantity less or equal to the annual replenishment is permitted to be removed from the river bed or its banks", it said. It ordered that extraction of groundwater by any industry will be only after seeking permission from the Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA).

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The NGT has also formed a supervisory committee to oversee the implementation of 543-page judgment directions passed by the green tribunal and submit a report on it.

The tribunal also asked the government agencies about how they were executing Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ambitious "Namami Gange project", adding that it did not want the "drama" regarding complaints between the Centre and Uttar Pradesh to go on.

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