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Ganga Utsav 2023 Celebrates River Rejuvenation and Cultural Heritage

The Ganga Utsav concluded with a mesmerizing fusion music performance by Pandit Siddharta Banerjee, symbolizing the harmonious relationship between the Ganges and the people of India.

Shivam Dwivedi
Ganga Utsav 2023 Celebrates River Rejuvenation and Cultural Heritage (Photo Source: PIB)
Ganga Utsav 2023 Celebrates River Rejuvenation and Cultural Heritage (Photo Source: PIB)

The 7th edition of Ganga Utsav, a celebration of the Ganges River and its cultural significance, took place in New Delhi, organized by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG). The event was inaugurated by Debashree Mukherjee, Secretary of the Department of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti, and G. Ashok Kumar, Special Secretary and Director General of NMCG.

This year's Ganga Utsav was a momentous occasion that saw the release of the 33rd edition of Namami Gange Magazine, the new Chacha Chaudhary series, and the Voyage of Ganga Booklet, in collaboration with the National Book Trust (NBT). Additionally, the 2nd edition of Ganga Pustak Parikrama was flagged off by Debashree Mukherjee and Mr. G. Asok Kumar. This three-month-long journey, starting from Gangotri on November 7, 2023, will pass through various cities and towns along the banks of the Ganges, culminating at Gangasagar on January 11, 2024.

Debashree Mukherjee emphasized the profound cultural and emotional connection that Indians share with the Ganga. She commended the progress made in the Ganga Rejuvenation efforts, particularly the collaboration with the new generation. Mukherjee highlighted the importance of water conservation and the need for collective action to protect rivers, echoing the sentiment that 'Water is Everyone's Business,' as emphasized by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In her address, she stressed the urgency of addressing issues such as solid waste contamination and sewage discharge into water bodies, with a special focus on plastic waste management. Mukherjee called for a Jan Andolan, a people's movement, to contribute to the noble cause of river rejuvenation.

G Asok Kumar, Special Secretary and Director General of NMCG, welcomed the attendees and highlighted the significance of the Ganga in India. He mentioned that Ganga was declared the National River of India in 2008, leading to the establishment of National Ganga Day. Kumar noted the recognition of Namami Gange by the United Nations as one of the top 10 World Restoration Flagships, a source of immense pride for India. He emphasized the importance of involving local communities in Ganga-related activities and highlighted the positive role played by District Ganga Committees in fostering people's participation.

Kumar pointed out the shift from an engineering-oriented approach to an Arth Ganga model, which emphasizes community involvement, education, and livelihood generation for local residents. He also noted the increase in the population of Ganges River Dolphins and the collaboration with international organizations to transform NMCG into a vibrant ecosystem for the Ganga River.

Ganga Utsav 2023 was not only a platform for discussions and awareness, but also a celebration of India's cultural heritage. The event featured captivating performances, including flute recitals, traditional folk dances, and musical renditions, reflecting the deep connection between the people and the rivers.

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