The Gujarat government has spent Rs 10 billion— the highest amount spent by any state — as of June under the National River Conservation Plan (NRCP) to clean Sabarmati Mindhola and Tapi rivers.
Setting up of Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) has been one of the key components of the programme where almost Rs 1.7 billion has been sanctioned for the three rivers in Gujarat states a written reply from Bishweswar Tudu Union Minister of State for Jal Shakti in the Lok Sabha. “Cleaning and rejuvenation of rivers is an ongoing activity. It is the primary responsibility of the states to ensure that urban local bodies and industrial units located in their jurisdiction carry out the treatment of the sewage and industrial effluents to the prescribed norms before discharging into rivers and other water bodies coastal waters or land to prevent and control pollution therein” the reply reads.
It added that the ministry has been supplementing the states’ efforts by providing financial and technical assistance to abate pollution in identified stretches of rivers across the country through schemes such as Namami Gange for rivers along the Ganga basin and through the centrally-sponsored NRCP scheme where the funding pattern is in the ratio of 6040 between the Centre and the state.
NRCP has so far covered polluted stretches on 35 rivers in 78 towns spread over 16 states in the country with the project sanctioned cost of Rs 6142 crore and inter alia a sewage treatment capacity of 2745.70 million litres per day (mld) has been created. An amount of Rs 2799 crore has been released to various states UTs governments as a Central share for the implementation of various pollution abatement schemes under NRCP.
The other state governments that have incurred higher expenditure under NRCP include Tamil Nadu and Punjab. While the Tamil Nadu government has spent Rs 901 crore for Cauvery Adyar Cooum Vaigai Vennar and Tamrabarani rivers Punjab has spent Rs 797 crore on Satluj Beas and Ghaggar.