In line with the objectives of the Namami Gange programme, a Swachhata Pakhwada (cleanliness fortnight) featuring Shramdaan, Pad Yatra and rallies was organized in Sahibganj District of Jharkhand to bring awareness on the importance of keeping River Ganga clean and free of pollution.
Organised by the Directorate of Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen), Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Government of Jharkhand, the fortnight held from March 16 to March 31, 2021 featured various IEC programmes to create mass level awareness, particularly among students and the community at large.
‘Namami Gange Programme’, is an Integrated Conservation Mission, approved as a ‘Flagship Programme’ by the Union Government in June 2014 with budget outlay of Rs.20,000 Crore to accomplish the twin objectives of effective abatement of pollution, conservation, and rejuvenation of River Ganga.
The Main pillars of the Namami Gange Programme are: Sewerage Treatment Infrastructure; River-Front Development; River-Surface Cleaning; Biodiversity; Afforestation; Public Awareness; Industrial Effluent Monitoring; Ganga Gram.
In the Sahibganj District of Jharkhand, the River Ganga crosses as many as 78 villages.
It is to promote awareness among those communities living alongside the River, various IEC and BCC activities in keeping with the Namami Gange programme were organized, under the chairmanship of the Deputy Commissioner of Sahibganj.
The activities included:
- Swachhata rallies at village level by Ganga volunteers, Ganga Prahari, Jal Sahiyas, SHGs and PRIs
- Pad Yatra at Block level by BDOs, Government officials, SHGs, VWSCs, PRIs and social activists
- Shramdaan at Gram Panchayat level by Ganga Volunteers, Ganga Prahari, Jal Sahiya, SHGs, PRIs, Swachhagrahis
- Candlelight marches at Block level by women groups, youth groups, NSS, NYK, social activists and Swachhagrahis
- Drawing, Speech, Essay, Quiz and Rangoli Competition at Block level for school students
- Folk dance, role play drama, cultural songs, and Bal Ganga Mitra identification/nomination for school students
- Workshops at District level for District and Block level officers and the community
- Ganga Arti for District and Block level officers and the community
- Cultural events for school students across the District
Leading the IEC activities from the front were members of the SBM-G District Water and Sanitation Committee – including Sahibganj Executive Engineer, Sri Advin, District Coordinator Mr. Ashish Kumar, Mr. Rahul Kumar, and Ms. Zeenat Parveen along with Block Coordinators, Social Mobilizers and Swachhagrahis.
To encourage participants, prizes were distributed to winners of various activities, even as Sahibganj District intends to continue its efforts for a Clean Ganga. With the formation of many volunteer groups called Ganga Mitra, Ganga Pahari, it is hoped that the River will look both clean and beautiful.