Ravi S Singh
New Delhi, April 18
Decks have been cleared for the Centre to start works on implementation of an ambitious project to rejuvenate the country’s 13 major rivers, including the five rivers of Punjab.
The five rivers of Punjab are Ravi, Beas, Sutlej, Chenab and Jhelum.
The other rivers identified for the proposed rejuvenation are Yamuna, Brahmaputra, Luni, Narmada,Godavari, Mahanadi, Krishna and Cauvery.
Sources said that the Centre has given final touches on ways to implement the works after giving approval to the Detailed Project Reports (DPRs).
DPRs for the rejuvenation of all these rivers have got clearance from the Centre and the operationalisation of the works will be according to the roadmap provided in them.
They have been prepared by Dehradun-based Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) in consultation with the State Forest Departments of the concerned states.
The proposed outlay in the 23 DPRs is more than Rs 19,342 crore under four major components.
Works proposed under them include afforestation at river banks, measures to contain soil erosion, recharge ground water table,ecological restoration and eco-tourism by developing river fronts.
It is estimated that groundwater recharge would be to the tune of about 1,890 million cubic metre per year.
Also, there would be reduction of sedimentation to the tune of 64,83,114 million cubic metre per year, which is likely to provide benefits for drinking water and irrigation.
Union Minister of State for Jal Shakti, Bishweswar Tudu, recently said that the Centre supplements efforts of the states/UTs for conservation and rejuvenation of rivers by providing financial assistance to check pollution through the Central sector scheme of “Namami Gange”.
Also, it assists them through the Centrally-sponsored scheme of National River Conservation Plan (NRCP).