Hindon rejuvenation: Mega plantation drive on river's banks soon
Meerut range commissioner Prabhat Kumar has stressed upon the need to clean the river Hindon and conducted a meeting on Saturday regarding it’s rejuvenation programme.
Kumar urged officials that a massive plantation drive needs to be undertaken along the banks of the river. He added that it was important to create awareness among the villagers who live on the banks of the Hindon regarding its revival apart from inspiring them to participate in this drive.
He also asked officials to place nets on the seven canals which fall in the river so that garbage doesn't fall into them. Moreover, he ordered investigations upon industries located near the river as these are considered to be the top notch polluting factor.
Ghaziabad District magistrate Ritu Maheshwari said the authorities have decided to plant two lakh saplings in the city before the arrival of the monsoon. She claimed that out of them, one lakh saplings will be planted along the banks of Hindon.
Maheshwari added that farmers who are ready to give their land located near the river for plantation purposes will be compensated with ‘Gram Sabha’ land and the administration can plant saplings along the river.
Further, she said that a proposal will also be sent to the center seeking funds under Namami Gange for rejuvenating the river.
In July 2017, Nirmal Hindon Kosh was launched on the directions of Kumar with a corpus fund of one crore rupees. Further, the development authorities of all six districts through which the river passes were asked to contribute in the fund.
Hindon also known as Harnandi, is the rain-fed river that originates in the Saharanpur district and flows through Muzaffarnagar, Meerut, Baghpat ,Ghaziabad, before emptying in Yamuna in Gautam Budh Nagar.
Polluting units on the banks of the river have however played havoc with its water. As per the Central Pollution Control Board report of 2015, it’s water has been declared unfit for bathing.
Although environmentalists are happy over the administration’s steps to cleanse the river, they have demanded that the polluting units should be shut down.
“As per a report of the pollution board there are about 360 industries primarily dealing in fabrics, tannery, paper, sugar and distillery near the river banks. Unless and until these are closed down, we wouldn’t witness any improvement.” says Vikrant Sharma from the NGO 'Jal Biradari'.
Sharma further added that untreated sewage and municipal solid wastes from cities such as Ghaziabad and Noida are being discharged into the river without proper treatment. He claimed that the administration needs to address this issue if it’s sincere about cleaning the river.