Task force on river interlinking

Published: Monday 31 January 2005

-- (Credit: Emkay)the Union government announced on December 29, 2004, its decision to wind up the taskforce on interlinking of rivers established by the previous National Democratic Alliance government. It said the body had completed its mandated task by submitting its recommendations. To look into the future course of the river linking programme, it set up a new special cell, under the Union ministry of water resources (m o wr). The cell will be headed by Neena Garg, joint secretary in the ministry.

The task force was constituted in December 2002 with a view to bring about consensus among states on the river linking programme and provide guidance on norms of appraisal of individual link proposals. The special cell will look after the task force's residual routine works and take necessary follow up actions. It will be supported by two senior technical officers of the National Water Development Agency.

Prior to the special cell's formation, an expert committee was constituted to advise the government on environmental and socio-economic aspects of river linking. It was headed by Water Resources secretary V K Duggal, with Garg as the member-secretary. Its members included Sarita Prasad, secretary, Union ministry of social justice and empowerment, Pradipto Ghosh, secretary, Union ministry of environment and forests, R Jeyaseelan, chairperson, Central Water Commission, sociologists Rajinder Singh and Mala Kapoor and environmentalist Ashok Khosla.

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