- The Union Cabinet today approved a massive Rs 20,000 crore budget for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s pet ‘Namami Gange Programme’ for the next five years, which is a five-fold increase over the money spent in the last three decades towards the conservation of the river.
- The programme would be implemented by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), and its state counterpart organisations, that is, the State Programme Management Groups (SPMGs).
- In order to improve implementation, a three-tier mechanism has been proposed for monitoring projects, comprising a high- level task force chaired by the Cabinet Secretary and assisted by NMCG at the national level, state-level committees chaired by Chief Secretary and assisted by SPMG and district-level committees chaired by the District Magistrate.
- the Centre now plans to provide for operation and maintenance of the assets for at least a 10-year period and adopt a PPP/SPV approach for pollution hotspots .
- Major infrastructure investments, which fall under the original mandate of other ministries, like Urban Development, Drinking Water and Sanitation, Environment Forests and Climate Change (EF&CC), will also additionally be undertaken.
- It also aims at rehabilitation and augmentation of existing STPs and immediate short-term measures for arresting pollution at exit points on river front to prevent inflow of sewage, the statement added.