New Delhi: In what could be seen as good news for Delhiites, Union Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh inspected the Yamuna and held a high-level meeting on the clean-up programme of the river. He said that Delhi and Haryana should make a collective effort to assume the responsibility and the government will spend Rs 17,000 crore on the project.

In the meeting held at Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit's residence in the presence of Chief Ministers of both the states, three major issues were discussed. It was decided that there should be an online monitoring and water quality check in the stretch Yamuna-Delhi (Palla-Okhla barrage). It was also decided that the industrial units in Panipat should stop depositing the chemical waste immediately.

Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said that there is a sewerage treatment plant (STP) in Panipat, but it cannot perform completely. There are a few dying units in Panipat which accumulate the chemical waste in the Yamuna.

Jairam proposed to make a project where the waste coming from the industrial units should be made pollution free and for which the Ministry of Environment will give financial assistance.

However, the Delhi government has assured that the Yamuna Action Plan-3 project will be completed in five years which will change the picture of Yamuna. The government said that it would spend Rs 17,000 crore. The Delhi government is planning to treat the wastes of 26 drains and a 62km pipeline will be laid.

However, Jairam clearly indicated that the Yamuna cannot be cleaned before 2015 and added that there would be a ban on accumulation of waste of 26 drains by 2015. He said that the entire process will be completed by 2020.
Jairam picks up waste

Jairam while inspecting the Yamuna picked up the wastes from the river and showed it to the officials. The Central Pollution Control Board also took samples from the river.

(JPN/ Agencies)