World Bank, India to sign loan agreement for cleaning Ganga

World Bank, India to sign loan agreement for cleaning Ganga

"The Rs 7,000 crore National Ganga River Basin Project, including USD 199 million interest-free IDA credit and USD 801 million low-interest IBRD loan from World Bank, will be signed tomorrow between the government of India and World Bank," an official statement issued here today said.

The Project will help the NGRBA set up a state-of-the-art Ganga Knowledge Centre to act as a repository for the conservation of the Ganga. The NGRBA will fund investments like sewage treatment plants and sewer networks that are critical for reducing the pollution.

Besides, the Project will help strengthen the Central and State Pollution Control Boards for better monitoring the pollution, by modernising information systems and providing staff training. It will finance the upgradation of the Ganga water  quality monitoring system and carry out an inventory of all sources of pollution. The Ganga, known as the most sacred river to Hindus, is a lifeline for millions of Indians who live along its course.

Its sprawling basin accounts for one-fourth of the country's water resources and is home to more than 400 million Indians - or some one-third of India's population.
However, the Ganga has the dubious distinction of being one of the world's most polluted rivers. The government developed a comprehensive vision for the cleaning-up and conservation of the Ganga, beginning with the establishment of the NGRBA in 2009.

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