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Activists welcome NGT’s directive to release water into Yamuna

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Agra/Mathura: The National Green Tribunal’s directive to the Haryana government to release 10 cumecs (cubic meters per second) of water into the Yamuna river from Hathini Kund barrage was welcomed by the region’s environmentalists and NGO activists.

Though the quantity ordered to be released was not much, at least a beginning had been made, it was pointed out.

While monitoring the implementation of ‘Maili se Nirmal Yamuna Revitalisation Project’, NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar on Thursday took the Haryana government to task for “dragging its feet” in the implementation of earlier Supreme Court and NGT decisions to release water in the Yamuna.

The governments of UP, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh were also directed to interact with an official panel led by Shashi Shekhar to sort out the issue of minimal release of water in the Yamuna.

The committee was formed in January 2015, and comprises secretaries of environment and water resources ministries, state government secretaries of related departments, commissioners of different municipal corporations and vice chairman of Delhi Development Authority.

“Though not much in terms of quantity, but at least a beginning has been made,” said Jagan Nath Poddar, convener of the ‘Friends of Vrindavan’.

Braj Bachao Samiti members welcomed the move and wanted more water to be released for downstream cities, which was allegedly diverted by the Haryana government through the Hathini Kund barrage for irrigation.

“A minimal flow was required to maintain the river’s ecology. The acquatic life in the river too needed minimum water for survival,” said Shravan Kumar Singh of ‘Braj Mandal Heritage Conservation Society’ in Agra.

Pointing out that release of water in the Yamuna was one of the main demands of the ‘Yamuna Muktikaran Abhiyan’, its convener Radha Krishan Shastri said that the NGT was doing a “good job”.

“It is an important decision,” he quipped.

Jai Krishan Das, national convener of ‘Yamuna Rakshak Dal’ said that the NGT order provided a “ray of hope” for those who wanted the river to thrive.

Meanwhile, Rhais Qureshi of ‘Braj Bachao Samiti’ said that the 40 to 50 ponds had been cleaned in the district and filled with canal water, which was good news for water availability in the area.

Divisional Commissioner Pradip Bhatnagar also formally launched a pipeline project to bring the Ganges waters to the Yamuna.

The project – with a completion deadline of December 2017 – will benefit both Mathura and Agra, officials said. (IANS)

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Astounding Facts Related To The Holy Kumbh Mela

The Kumbh Mela is held once in 12 years and between the Kumbh Melas at Haridwar and Nashik, there is a difference of around 3 years

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Kumbh Mela is organized periodically at one of the four places on rotational basis. Wikimedia Commons
Kumbh Mela is organized periodically at one of the four places on rotational basis. Wikimedia Commons
  • Kumbh Mela is a mass Hindu pilgrimage of faith in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred or holy river
  • As per historic belief, bathing in holy rivers is thought to cleanse a person of all sins
  • The Kumbh Mela is held once in 12 years

“It is wonderful, the power of a faith like that, that can make multitudes upon multitudes of the old and weak and the young and frail enter without hesitation or complaint upon such incredible journeys and endure the resultant miseries without repining. It is done in love, or it is done in fear; I do not know which it is. No matter what the impulse is, the act born of it is beyond imagination, marvellous to our kind of people, the cold whites.”

These were the words from Mark Twain, after visiting the Kumbh Mela in 1895.

Kumbh Mela or Kumbha Mela is recognized by the UNESCO’s Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. It is a mass Hindu pilgrimage of faith in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred or holy river. Traditionally, four Melas are widely considered as the Kumbh Melas and are held in Haridwar, Nashik, Allahabad and Ujjain.

Also Read: 10 Facts To Know About The Historical Meenakshi Temple

These fairs are organized periodically at one of the following places by rotation: Haridwar, Allahabad, Nashik district, and Ujjain. The main festival site is located on the banks of a river: the Ganga at Haridwar. It is the junction where the Ganga, the Yamuna, the invisible Sarasvati at Allahabad, the Godavari at Nashik and the Shipra at Ujjain meets. As per historic belief, bathing in these rivers is thought to cleanse a person of all sins.