NEW DELHI: The Centre has decided not to approve any new hydro-power project on the Ganga. The move will help the government in its river cleaning efforts as dams which are part of such projects obstruct the ecological flow (e-flow) hampering the river’s self-cleansing ability.
“Government won’t approve any new hydro-power project on the river Ganga,” Union water resources minister Nitin Gadkari told TOI.
The decision, in this regard taken in a recent meeting at the prime minister’s office (PMO), will, however, not affect under construction projects.
Gadkari said his ministry was also weighing new interventions to ensure that the river has adequate depth throughout the year.
Depth of the Ganga is reduced at several stretches due to continuous deposition of silt and dumping of solid waste over the years.
Dredging is one of the options to maintain adequate depth which is required for transportation through waterways.
The government has already launched the national waterway project for commercial navigation in the river Ganga and for this adequate depth is required to be maintained round the year. Phase-I of the project covers the Haldia-Varanasi stretch.