Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday announced that the Ganga water will be lifted to Gaya and pilgrimage centre Bodh Gaya. Tenders for the first phase of the Ganga uplift scheme has been issued.
The CM was speaking at a programme organised by the Irrigation department to mark the inauguration of 30 irrigation projects valued at Rs1,400 crore.
He said the Ganga water would be lifted from Mokamah, 100 kms from Patna and would be diverted to Bodh Gaya via Nawada, Rajgir and Gaya towns. Though Rajgir, Bodh Gaya and Gaya were tourist centres, they faced severe water crisis. Ponds in Rajgir have dried up and the Falgu river in Bodh Gaya was generally dry.
“An international cricket stadium is coming up at Rajgir in addition to an international Nalanda university and film centres. A state police training centre has been opened at Rajgir,” CM said, hoping the water crisis would end soon with Ganga water reaching the town.
He claimed land acquisition have been completed. It is proposed to lift the Ganga water during the monsoon season from Mokamah, uplift them to the reservoirs at the beneficiary towns.
Clearance of the forest and environment department has been obtained, he told the officers and directed them to speed up the completion of the project.
The CM told them he would be visiting the sites on August 29 to ensure timely completion.
Nitish, an engineering graduate, said the planning and design of the Ganga uplift scheme was done by him as he was not satisfied with the designs prepared by the engineers of the water resources department.
The CM added work for inter-linking of all rivers in Bihar would start soon. During the monsoon, the floodwaters of small rivers drain into the Ganga and finally into the Bay of Bengal. The inter-linking of rivers in Bihar would help end drought conditions too.
He said 73% of the geographical area of Bihar was in flood zone every year. This year, 16 districts are still in the grip of floods.