New Delhi: The Uttarakhand High Court on Monday recognised the Ganga and Yamuna rivers as the first living entity of India. Recognising a river as a living entity means granting it the same legal rights as human being. The new status means if someone pollutes Ganga River, the law will see no difference between harming a human being and harming the river because they are one and the same.
The HC had earlier this month, lashed out at the Uttarakhand government for not doing anything "concrete" to clean the Ganga River. It said that the government was not doing any efforts , required to save the River Ganga. The court said "The Ganga should be saved for the generations to come".
Several porojects to clean upo the river are expected to be given a boost after Bhartiya Janata Party's win in the state Assemb;ly elections this year. The Central government had given the green signal to 'Namami Gange' in May 2015. The programme integrates the efforts to clean and protect Ganga River in a comprehensive manner and has a set budget of Rs 20,000 crore for five years (2015-2020).
"Since Uttarakhand (from where Ganga River originates) w ill now be ruled by the same party in the state and at the Centre, it would hopefully be easier to bring all stakeholders at the same page," an official was quoted as saying.
The officials added that it was crucial to maintain uninterrupted flow of the river to clean it naturally, but the state of Uttarakhand was not convinced of the same. The state has been demanding new dams on Ganga River, which was a hurdle for the flow.
Uttarakhand: HC recognised river Ganga as the first living entity of India. pic.twitter.com/aPQQRequ5r— ANI (@ANI_news) March 20, 2017
However, the Executive Committee of the NATIONAL Mission for Clean Ganga had recently approved 20 projects- 13 0f which are in Uttarakhand- worth Rs 1,900 crore to be swiftly implemented in Uttarkhand, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.