Lucknow, Jul 3: Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhwat on Wednesday gave full marks to the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh for the implementation of Central schemes on Namami Gange and other projects, related to water conservation and 'Swacchta abhiyan'.
"UP is doing good work and it seems that it will set a milestone in the country," he said, while admitting that previously, the state was lagging behind in different projects, including Namami Gange and 'Swacchta'.
"UP was at the bottom in the country's list on 'Swacchta,' but now, it has improved a lot. However, more is required and the state government has shown its commitment for completing the projects on time," he claimed.
Mr Sekhawat held a long meeting with Mr Adityanath at the Secretariat here, in the presence of Central and state officers, along with a video-conference with the District Magistrates of several districts.
The UP Chief Minister, in his long press conference after the meeting, said the state has committed before the Union Minister, to complete all Namame Gange and Swacchta projects, within a time-frame.
He said they will again sit in August, to review the progress of the projects, as guidelines to complete them have been framed today.
"There are 87 projects of Namami Gange worth over Rs 11,952 crore in the state, including 50 of sewage. Out of these, 15 have been completed. The rest would be completed within the stipulated time-frame," he added.
Announcing that the government has set up Ganga committees in all districts, through which the Ganga flows in UP, the Chief Minister said the banks have already been made Open Defecation Free (ODF), while large scale toilets have been constructed under the Swacchta abhiyan.
Mr Adityanath claimed that due to the Swacchta abhiyan and its successful projects, the virus of AES/JE has come down by 65 per cent.
He also attributed the success of Kumbh Mela at Prayagraj early this year for free flow of Ganga water and cleanliness, where 24 crore pilgrims took the holy dip in Sangam, between January 5 and March 5.
Talking about the water conservation efforts, he said rain water harvesting and ground water recharging has been promoted in the state.
"All the private and government buildings are being promoted for making arrangement of underground water recharging," he said.
Commenting on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's slogan of ' Har Ghar Nal' (every house to have tap water), he said a mega project to supply piped drinking water in every village of Bundelkhand region was underway, where work will start in August.
"This Rs 9000 crore project, for which the foundation has been laid and DPR has been completed, will be completed in the next two years time, when every house in Bundelkhand region will get clean tap water," he said.
Mentioning about the plantation drive in the state, he claimed that 22 crore saplings would be planted on a day on August 15, while a mega plantation drive would be launched on the banks of several rivers in the state, with a target to plant around 35 crore saplings, during monsoon. (UNI)