Haridwar (Uttarakhand), May 20: To ensure effective implementation of the first phase of Ganga rehabilitation programme, Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti on Tuesday said she has decided to spend 3-4 days a week on the banks of the river to keep a tab on the drains flowing into it.
Bharti on Tuesday took a tour of Haridwar on a motorcycle to inspect its sewage system.
She said that with the first phase of the programme spent in making financial provisions and lengthy paperwork, it was time for her to come out of her official chamber to spend at least 3-4 days a week on the banks of the Ganga to keep an eye on what flows into the river.
"I have decided that till October 2016, I will spend 3-4 days every week on the banks of the river to see the drains that flow into the Ganga and making it dirty," she told reporters after touring the city.
Citing increased budgetary allocations for the Ganga action plan, Bharti said the projection for the next four years is Rs. 20,000 crore and it is good that the state governments don't have to shoulder any financial responsibility regarding the project.
Announcing that drafting of a law on Ganga cleaning was in the final stages, she said it may include criminal provisions to ensure cleanliness and relentless flow of the river.
The minister also said that she had asked Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat to prepare a roadmap on tapping of drains flowing into Badrinath and Gangotri.
The state government will get all support from the Centre for the implementation of the roadmap, she said.
An eco-taskforce consisting of about 2000 personnel and a Ganga Volunteer Corps will be constituted and deployed along the banks of the river to ensure that it is not being dirtied, Bharti said.