What Was the Ganga Action Plan?

The Ganga Action Plan was a movement by the government of India to eliminate pollution of the Ganga River. The first phase of the plan was launched in 1985. Phase II of the plan was implemented from 1993 through 2000. In 2011, funding for another phase was approved.

The plan was also meant to be a launchpad for implementing similar strategies in fighting pollution in other rivers throughout India. The World Bank is helping to fund the project with more than $1 billion. In addition to cleaning up pollution in India's rivers, the Ganga Action Plan also aims to sustain resources derived from the river and assist farmers who farm near the river basins. It also aims to educate people through the establishment of a knowledge center.

The plan encompasses more than 3,000 total bodies of water across 12 Indian states and involves several government agencies that spread across a wide spectrum of focuses, including forestry, tourism, sanitation and land development. In addition to sanitation and sustainability, the Ganga Action Plan is also part of a widespread government effort to manage the flooding of major bodies of water across India better. The government claims to have effectively reduced pollution in more than 2,000 bodies of water. As of 2014, there is currently no scheduled termination for the plan.