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India Signs 1 Billion Dolar Agreement with World Bank to Save Ganga.

Summary: NEW DELHI(Cihan) India signed 1 Billion dollar agreement with the World Bank on Tuesday (June 14) for the cleaning and conservation of the Ganga under National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA) initiative.

Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh and Roberto Zagha, World Bank Country Director in India signed the agreement.

Addressing the media, Jairam Ramesh said, "Today, we have signed two agreements as it is mentioned. One is on the National Ganga River Basin Authority which is a billion dollar project from the World Bank and the second one is the Biodiversity and Livelihood Project, which is about a 30 million dollar project over the next six years. The NGRBA project is a billion dollars spread over the next eight years."

He further informed about the distribution of money across the states for cleaning Ganga.

"As far as the Ganga is concerned, in the last two years, the NGRBA has sanctioned two thousand six hundred crore (rupees) worth of projects. Out of which about thirteen hundred crore is in Uttar Pradesh, six hundred and forty crore in West Bengal, four hundred and forty crore is in Bihar and the one hundred fifty crore is in Uttarakhand. We have not been able to begin this in Jharkhand but I hope very soon we will open our account in Jharkhand as well," said Ramesh.

The authority has resolved under its 'Mission Clean Ganga' that by year 2020, no untreated municipal sewage or industrial effluents will be discharged into the river.

As of now, only about one-third of the sewage generated by the towns and cities on the mainstream of the river is treated and a significant volume of untreated or inadequately treated industrial effluents are also discharged into the Ganga.

The project, with an estimated cost of Rs 7,000 crore has been approved by the Indian government and the World Bank.

The share of the government will be Rs 5,100 crore and that of the five state governments -- Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal -- will be Rs 1,900 crore.

The NGRBA is planning, implementing and monitoring authority for the Ganges formed in 2009, following the failure of GAP (Ganga Action Plan)

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Publication:Cihan News Agency (CNA)
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Jun 15, 2011
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