Lucknow: The Yogi Adityanath government is working on the revival of as many as 19 rivers that were almost dead and could well have been termed as endangered.
Two of the rivers, Mandakini and Tamsa, that have mythological significance, have already been revived while work is on for the remaining 17 rivers.
These rivers include Tedhi, Manorama, Pandu, Varuna, Sasur Khadedi, Sai, Aril, Morva, Naad, Karnawati, Baan, Sot, Kaali Poorvi, Dadhi, Eshan, Boodhi Ganga and Gomti.
According to the Chief Minister, "Every river or a water source has its own bio diversity and it is very essential for maintaining a balance in the environment. If a river flows naturally in its acquisition area, it is boon rather than a bane for the population.
"Besides maintaining the water level of the land masses around it, it also assists in the livelihood of thousands of people. The death of a river deprives us of many such benefits and for a healthy and prosperous generation, it is very important to have rivers keep naturally flow along the landmasses."
One of the rejuvenated rivers is Mandakini that also finds a mention in the epic Ramayana where it is also said that Lord Ram, Sita and Laxman spent a majority of time of their exile on the banks in Chitrakoot.
Tulsidas also wrote the Ramayana on the banks of this holy place that was known as the lifeline of the city. The river had almost disappeared and was lying dry for over four decades.
The Mandakini is now filled with water.
The other river that has the water flowing is the Tamsa river, that was once identified with the Avadh region.
According to the Hindu beliefs, Lord Ram, Sita and Laxman took their first night halt on the banks of Tamsa when they left Ayodhya on their exile.
It may be recalled that in March 2017, the Chief Minister had said that revival and linking of the rivers in Uttar Pradesh was a priority area for his government as it would have a positive impact on agriculture.
The UP Rural Development Department has been working in close coordination with the Union Jal Shakti Ministry.
A state level committee headed by principal secretary, rural development, was set up for time bound completion of work on each of the 19 rivers.
Union Jal Shakti minister Mahendra Singh said, "With the ongoing restoration of rivers, we have provided employment for the local labour force that is working wholeheartedly as the rivers are still considered sacred in the rural hinterland."
He said that in Kanpur, the work is on to revive two rivers -- Pandu and Eshan. A Chennai-based company has been roped in to clear the Pandu river through bioremediation technology, which involves using living organisms like microbes and bacteria to remove contaminants, pollutants and toxins from water. At the same time, four drains carrying industrial and domestic waste are being tapped.
The company will start treating the water at the origin point from November before it gets into the river.