UP's religious smart city plan gets rejected

Policy matters this week
Ganga at Garhmukteshwar (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)
Ganga at Garhmukteshwar (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)

Committee rejects UP's plan for a religious hi-tech smart city 

To safeguard the Ganga river, the environment ministry panel has rejected Uttar Pradesh government’s proposal to develop the country’s first “religious hi-tech smart city” in Garhmukteshwar. With an aim to inculcate a unique mix of technology and religion, the state government had proposed to develop a new city spread over 7,395 hectares inside Hastinapur wildlife sanctuary and on both banks of the Ganga river. The proposal, however, has been rejected as it has the potential to change the morphology and the hydrodynamics of the Ganga river and could kill approximately 7 km of the river in the state.

Bellandur lake frothing: NGT pulls up the Karnataka government

Bengaluru's Bellandur lake frothed again following the record rainfall on August 15 and 16. Post the frothing, the National Green Tribunal has pulled up the Karnataka government for failing to address the issue. The tribunal has also sought information from the government on how many stormwater drains it has cleared, how much solid waste has been collected from the lake, where the collected waste has been taken and what preventive steps were being put in place to ensure that the frothing does not continue.

SC raps Maharashtra government over pollution in Ulhas and Waldhuni rivers

Taking note of the absence of coordination between the authorities to protect the Ulhas and Waldhuni rivers, the Supreme Court has rapped the Maharashtra government for letting the two rivers get degraded due to the increasing pollution. The principal secretary, the state environment department and the member secretary of the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) have been ordered to be present in person during the next hearing on September 18.

HC orders J&K government to demarcate wetlands in the state

The high court has ordered the state government to demarcate the wetlands and take measures to conserve water bodies in the Valley. The commissioner secretary, forest, has been asked to act as the nodal authority and ensure that the demarcation will be carried out with geographic information system (GIS) technology. The court has also ordered the commissioner secretary of the irrigation department to convene a meeting and submit an action plan for building interconnections between wetlands and rivers in the next hearing. 

Completion of North Koel Reservoir Project gets approved

With an estimated expenditure of Rs 1622.27 crore, the union cabinet has given its approval to complete the balance works of the North Koel Reservoir Project in Jharkhand and Bihar. The project aims to provide irrigation to 111,521 hectares of land annually in the most backward and drought-prone areas of Palamu and Garhwa districts in Jharkhand and Aurangabad and Gaya districts in Bihar.

This is a roundup of important policy matters from August 16 - 21, 2017. Also, read the news this week.