April 2017 \ Cover Story \ COVER: POLITICAL INTERVIEW
“Within one year we’ll demonstrate results on Ganga cleaning”

Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Ms Uma Bharti has the task of delivering

We understand various countries are in touch with you to actively participate in the National Mission to Clean Ganga. Is our understanding right?

That is right. Several countries across the world have offered to be a part of this Mission. Straightaway the names that come to mind are Japan, Israel, Germany, France, England, Holland, Belgium, Spain and Italy. Some have offered their technology. Like England has offered to share their experience with the Thames, Israel has done a lot of water harvesting in rivers. Australia and Germany have similarly worked on their rivers. Some countries are willing to assist financially against low interest rates. Presentations have been made, and for obvious reasons I cannot go into details. I need to maintain secrecy. But we must remember that no matter what technology and assistance we go in for, we have to remain patient. Transforming rivers, cleaning them, making them navigable, having tourism around them are projects that have sometimes taken decades in some countries. But we’ll ensure that we pick up momentum quickly. 

On the subject of interlinking, some day can we expect heavy movement of cargo through our rivers?

Yes. In fact connectivity between two points in UP and MP will start very shortly. Ken-Betwa river linking will help transportation become economical, especially for poor people who find even bus fares are too much to pay for. I have even said that cruise can start on that stretch and it will give rise to several economic activities.