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The Ganga Vichar Manch was launched on January 30 under the National Mission for Clean Ganga
Two months after the launch of the “Ganga Vichar Manch”, an interactive web portal seeking suggestions from the public for cleaning the Ganga, it is clear that the discussion on the platform remains focused on only a few issues.
A look at the discussion shows that participants seem to be in favour of reduction and treatment of liquid waste flowing into the river, but the problems of encroachment of the riverine area for livelihood, poor sanitation, pollution due to worship and ecological flow management do not find enough space in their comments.
The Ganga Vichar Manch was launched on January 30, 2016 during a national level stakeholder consultation and sensitisation programme organised by the government under the National Mission for Clean Ganga (MNCG). The website intends to start a national dialogue on strategies required for restoring the Ganga and invites suggestions from individuals, academicians, NGOs, voluntary organisations and corporations. The main focus of the dialogue is achieving a continuous and unpolluted flow into the river along with different sub-themes related to wastewater management, afforestation, water conservation, biodiversity, and riverfront development.
Citizens have come up with suggestions for using a naturally available on-site treatment bio-remediation system for cleaning the river. The comments address issues related to riverfront development, efficient use of fresh water and other issues related to the conservation and management of the riverine area.
In one suggestion made by Puskal Upadhyay, additional director, National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), the importance of the role of the youth has been emphasised. U B Chaudhary, director, Mahamana Malviya Institute of Technology for Ganga Management, Varanasi, has welcomed the steps taken by the government for launching this platform. He has written that the establishment of such a system will be beneficial for public awareness and has asked for proper evaluation and monitoring of public comments and suggestions.
Proper participation by the public on this platform has the potential to influence government decision-making for the Ganga, say experts.
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