Ganga River Current Affairs

NGT declares 100m from edge of Ganga as No-development Zone

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has passed a slew of directions, measures, fines, and strict deadlines to rejuvenate River Ganga.

It declared ‘No-Development Zone’ along an area of 100 metres from the edge of the river in the stretch between Haridwar in Uttarakhand and Unnao in Uttar Pradesh. This zone must be turned into green belts.

NGT directions

The NGT has banned dumping of waste of any kind within 500 metres from the edge of River Ganga.  Rs. 50,000 environment compensation will be imposed on anyone who dumps waste in the river. The apex environment regulator also directed all authorities concerned to complete various projects including setting up of a sewage treatment plant and cleaning drains within two years.

The NGT also directed Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh governments to formulate guidelines for regulating religious activities on the ghats of Ganga River or its tributaries. It also ordered to stop indiscriminate extraction of groundwater from all industrial units falling in the catchment area of Ganga River.

The NGT also directed Uttar Pradesh government to be duty-bound to shift tanneries within six weeks, from Jajmau in Kanpur to leather parks in Unnao or any other appropriate place.

It also appointed a supervisory committee, headed by the secretary of the Union Water Resources Ministry and comprising IIT professors and officials from UP government to oversee implementation of the directions passed in its verdict. It also asked the committee to submit reports at regular intervals.

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NGT fixes norms for camping along Ganga in Uttarakhand

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has prohibited all camping activity on beaches which fall within 100 meters along the River Ganga from Shivpuri to Rishikesh in Uttarakhand.

The 50 km stretch of River Ganga between Shivpuri to Rishikesh is a hub of eco-tourism and river rafting.

The judgment came on a petition which had highlighted pollution caused by unregulated camping in the river and its adjoining areas. It also highlighted pollution caused to the river and the soil due to leftovers of tourists.

Key Facts
  • NGT bench gave this ruling by relying on various studies conducted by the Uttarakhand government and the Wildlife Institute of India (WII).
  • It held that river rafting is one of the significant components of eco-tourism, but it needs to be encouraged but with a clear mandate so that it does not cause any environmental and biodiversity degradation
  • It clarified that the portion of the identified beaches which fall outside the restriction of 100 meters should only be used for effective camping activity.
  • The remaining part of the beach should not be permitted for any activity including tenting, toilets and other incidental requirements.
  • NGT held that the illegal and improper activities at the camping sites led to the pollution of River Ganga. I ordered implementation of management plan prepared by State government.
About National Green Tribunal

NGT is a special fast-track court to handle the expeditious disposal of the cases pertaining to environmental issues. It was established under National Green Tribunal (NGT) Act, 2010 enacted by the Parliament, under India’s constitutional provision of Article 21, which assures the citizens of India the right to a healthy environment.

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