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This year the Namami Gange project has been included in the prestigious ‘Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Public Administration 2020’. Interacting with the District Magistrates (DMs) of Uttar Pradesh and senior officials associated with the District Ganga Committees through video conferencing, Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) asked them to submit their nominations for this year's Prime Minister's Awards for Excellence in Public Administration. "There is a good opportunity for Uttar Pradesh to present the achievement of Ganga cleanliness, it will encourage the work of river sanitation across the country", said Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra. He went on to say that economic activities are also benefiting from the efforts of the 26 District Ganga Committees of Uttar Pradesh. These Committees work at the district level in collaboration with local residents for the cleanliness and rejuvenation of Ganga. After their constitution, there has been a big change in the cleanliness of the Ganga and in the rejuvenation efforts. Organic farming and development of biological diversity along the banks of the Ganga will increase the means of employment at the local level.

According to Shri Mishra, various units of Namami Gange continued to operate even during the lockdown, which has resulted in better results than expected. After completing a series of meetings with the District Ganga Committees of Uttar Pradesh, he said, "The objective of the National Mission for Clean Ganga is not limited only to the ‘Nirmalta’ and ‘Aviralta’ of the Ganga, we are also working on the contours of Arth Ganga so that a sustainable socioeconomic zone is developed around the Ganga and its tributaries, which will give a boost to the ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ campaign.”

In the past, the success of Ganga Yatra and Ganga Aamantran Abhiyan has brought awareness among the people, due to which now public participation is increasing not only in the areas along the Ganga but also in the cleanliness of other rivers. The migrant workers returning home during the lockdown were linked to the renovation of river-ponds through the Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), benefiting local economy and preserving natural sources for storing monsoon water.

Apart from this, work is being initiated in Moradabad with IIT Kanpur and WWF to develop the biodiversity of the area. In the districts of Hardoi, Bijnor, Meerut etc., many species of turtles are now being conserved and promoted. The hatching has been successfully done for the first time by improving the tortoise pond in Hardoi. Survey continues for Wetlands in Rae Bareli. The Ganga banks are becoming encroachment free. Plantation drives are also an important component of this plan. Forests along the Ganga will be developed by planting saplings in all districts. In Kasganj, 3.5 lakh saplings have been planted on three hundred hectares of land this year under this scheme.

All the District Collectors involved in the meeting gave details of the activities taking place in their district. It was decided to include Namami Gange in the ‘Prime Minister's Awards for Excellence in Public Administration 2020’ at the National Ganga Council meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Kanpur on December 14, 2019. District- wise details will be sent to NMCG for nomination. Applications have to be filed before August 15. The awards will be distributed on the occasion of the Civil Services Day.

Now flow in Karnavati will remain throughout the year: The Namami Gange project includes cleanliness and renovation of tributaries of the Ganges. Due to renovation of the river Karnavati, a tributary of Ganga in Mirzapur district, it will now flow throughout the year. The socio-economic model being implemented will greatly benefit areas along the banks of Karnavati. At the same time, the Sai river of Hardoi district which meets Gomti has been revived with the help of migrant workers. On the same lines, the old Ganga has been renovated at Kasganj and Farrukhabad.

Migrant laborers got work and protected water resources: Migrant workers were engaged in conservation of natural water sources during the period of lockdown, especially in the areas of District Ganga Samiti including Varanasi, Kanpur, Bijnor. Small rivers and ponds have benefited from this. Kachla Ghat will be developed at Badaun.

Along with dolphin protection, prosperity of the farmers increases: Under the Namami Gange programme, farmers of Fatehpur district are being given special training in organic farming. The region is also known for the Ganges dolphin so the dolphin conservation work is also progressing through a special project.

Namami Gange project provides boost to local economy; included in the prestigious ‘Prime Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Public Administration 2020’
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