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India’s Hindi Heartland reins in the floodwaters of the mighty River Ganga

Patna, November 27, 2022: The popular tourist destinations Rajgir, Gaya, and Bodh Gaya, known collectively as the ‘Buddhist circuits,’ received a ‘valuable gift’ from Chief Minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar on November 27, 2022. The CM inaugurated the first phase of India’s first-of-its-kind innovative drinking water project, the Gangajal Aapurti Yojana.
The project, initiated under the Jal Jeevan Hariyali mission, is the dream project of the Chief Minister. It is also Bihar’s first, and largest drinking water programme. The project will store, treat, and supply the floodwaters of the River Ganga the state receives during the monsoon months.
The initiative has two objectives. First, it conserves floodwater, preventing wastage, and second, it transforms this precious resource into safe, drinkable water.
This floodwater will be lifted through pumps at Hathidah and transported through a 151-kilometre pipeline to three enormous reservoirs in Rajgir, Tetar, and Gaya. These reservoirs stand out as they have been constructed based on the terrain and using natural materials. Water from the reservoirs will travel to two Water Treatment Plants (WTP), where it is treated and transported to the “enlightenment” cities.
These three South Bihar cities of Rajgir, Gaya, and Bodh Gaya have been experiencing water shortages due to excessive groundwater extraction via borewells.
Megha Engineering & Infrastructures Limited (MEIL) has executed the entire first phase of the project. A top official of the MEIL said, “Immense effort went into conceptualising the project and constructing it. A large workforce was engaged. And despite the COVID-19 pandemic, we finished the project within three years. With the supply of potable, safe, clean drinking water, the water challenges in these cities will be minimised to a large extent.
With the successful completion of the first phase, drinking water requirements of significant locations, such as Nalanda University, IT Park, Cricket Stadium, Film City, Police training camp, Nature Saffari, and Zoo Saffari, will be fulfilled. In addition, the Ganga Jal will be accessible to well-known temples, including Brahmakund, Mangalgouri, and Vishnupad Mandir.

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