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Is There Any Hope Left For The River Ganga ?

On March 20, 2017, the Uttarakhand High Court declared Ganga as  the “first living entity of India"

By Ruchika Verma

  • River Ganga is one of the holiest river in India
  • Despite its holy status and dependence of people on it, the river is constantly one of the most polluted
  • Several efforts are being made in order to reduce the pollution in Ganga

River Ganga is one of the most famous river, whose holiness is not only known in India but all over the world. However, the holy river Ganga is not only famous for its history or holiness, but rather for the pollution it suffers from.

ghats of Ganga are some of the most polluted sites in India. Wikimedia Commons
ghats of Ganga are some of the most polluted sites in India. Wikimedia Commons

Ganga is one of the most polluted rivers i the world. Subject to rituals, daily chores and incompetent cleaning plans, the Ganga is hardly the holy river it used to be. Several attempts have been made to clean the holy river but none of them has had any major  success till now.

Efforts for Cleaning the Ganga 

In past few years, governments and local organisations have made  invests of billions of rupees to plan and run various campaigns and programs directed at the clean-up and restoration of the Ganga. However, despite all the efforts, the mistreatment the river Ganga and its pollution are not seeing any reduction.

River Ganga is not only a spiritual and cultural hub for Indians and pilgrims, it is also the lifeline of the approximated 43% of Indians. Many household depends solely on Ganga for their day-to-day chores.

The Holy River Ganga is spiritual hub for many pilgrims. Pixabay
The Holy River Ganga is spiritual hub for many pilgrims. Pixabay

Keeping this in mind, cleaning Ganga should be one of the prime concerns of government, however, despite several efforts, there is no change in the pollution level of the River Ganga.

River Ganga – A Living Entity

On March 20, 2017, the Uttarakhand High Court declared Ganga as  the “first living entity of India” giving the holy river rights similar to that of a living person.

The main motive behind this step was the preservation of the river. This makes any crime committed against the river Ganga, like dumping of waste, eligible to be tried in court as the acts will constitute as harm against a person.

Several plans have been made to clean the river Ganga. Wikimedia Commons
Several plans have been made to clean the river Ganga. Wikimedia Commons

National River Ganga (Rejuvenation Protection and Maintenance) Bill Act 2017, was also passed to ensure the cleanliness and rejuvenation of the river Ganga. The proposed Ganga Act of 2017 makes Ganga, first river in the country to be protected by an Act of Parliament.

The Act could help in protecting the river in many ways. It is not only for the protection of the holy river but also for the people who use its water. There are several plans being enforced to protect the river, many technical and natural ways are being adopted to protect river Ganga. It also serves as a guide to protect other rivers in the future.

Ganga has been declared as 'a living entity' by the uttarakhand high Court. Wikimedia Commons
Ganga has been declared as ‘a living entity’ by the uttarakhand high Court. Wikimedia Commons

With several efforts being made to save the river Ganga, maybe there is still a hope for this holy river.

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