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4) Recently the National Green Tribunal pulled up the government for “tardy progress” on the Clean Ganga Mission. Evaluate whether there is a need for a law heavy on punitive measures to clean the Ganga.(250 words)

Topic– Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation

4) Recently the National Green Tribunal pulled up the government for “tardy progress” on the Clean Ganga Mission. Evaluate whether there is a need for a law heavy on punitive measures to clean the Ganga.(250 words)

Indianexpress

Why this question

The article discusses the status of Namami Gange project and the target of the government to see a 70-80% improvement in water of Ganges. The article highlights the issues with a draft proposal by the government of introducing stricter punitive measures to tackle pollution of the river. It also highlights the issues with the implementation of Namami Gange. Since cleaning the Ganges is a top priority of the government and several questions in the past few years have been asked from this topic, it is important for mains.

Key demand of the question

The question expects us to first explain the status of Namami Gange project, how far the government has been successful in cleaning up the river. Next, we need to highlight the issues with Namami Gange project and the overall approach of the government in dealing with the issue of river cleaning. In this light, we need to evaluate whether a law which penalizes more strictly for dirtying the river would help in more efficient implementation of cleaning project. We need to conclude with a fair and balanced opinion and mention way forward.

Directive word

Evaluate – When you are asked to evaluate, you have to pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidences.  You have to appraise the worth of the statement in question. There is scope for forming a personal opinion here.

Structure of the answer

Introduction – Explain the Namami Gange initiative of the government – Namami Gange’ program was announced under the National Mission for Clean Ganga initiative with an allocated budget of Rs 20,000 crores for 5 years and that the project covers eight states and seeks to fully connect all 1,632 Gram Panchayats along the Ganga to a sanitation system by 2022.

Body

  • We need to explain how far the government has been successful in implementing the project – According to a new report from the CAG, this new push to clean the Ganga is not delivering results. The Government had only used $260 million of the $1.05 billion earmarked for the flagship programme between April 2015 and March 2017. All of these projects had a consistent list of problems: unused funds, an absence of a long-term plan, and delays in taking concrete action.
  • Thereafter we need to highlight the issues with the project – diversion of water for irrigation and other purposes which reduces the flow of water, poor effluent management system, faulty implementation of rules and regulations etc
  • Next, we need to discuss whether a low more focussed on taking punitive action would help in alleviating the issues being faced. We need to compare it with the current strategy, if properly implemented

Conclusion – We need to provide our opinion on the need for such a law and discuss what the way forward should be.