Prayag - where the Yamuna meets the Ganga
Allahabad, located in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh and where the Ganges, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers meet, is a focal point for. This is something we should have highlighted at the Paris meet. What is . the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati in Allahabad. At their confluence the Yamuna is larger than the Ganges, contributing Now flowing east, the river meets the Tamsa River (also called Tons).
Are you saying India missed an opportunity to become a rallying point for other nations? We know how to use our water sources just as we know how to extract water, and through the centuries, have used this technology in the most effective manner without depleting our resources. Let me cite an example.Shakira - Whenever, Wherever (Live From Paris)
Prince Charles approached me last year to help provide solutions for the flooding of the Thames river in the United Kingdom. I went there to make an on-the-spot assessment. I provided him with a traditional Indian solution where the flow of the river was slowed down by the construction of small barrages at the places where the river meandered.
I provided them with a typical Indian solution which the UK government has happily accepted. Now I am invited there once every three times to monitor the river flow. There are hundreds of Indians who possess similar expertise.
Why is the government not using their skills and knowledge? Instead, all our water bodies -- whether our rivers or our tanks, ponds and wells -- are all facing major encroachments. We are also plagued with the problem of over extraction.
Our present educational system has come up with a breed of students who are taught subjects such as soil, climate and water uses without understanding that these are evolutionary resources that are irreplaceable. Please understand that all our underground and surface aquifers are exhausted and we have no water sources left in our villages.
'The Ganga is in ICU' - acryingshame.info India News
This in turn has resulted in huge levels of migration which in turn is causing huge social upheaval. Are you saying we should go back to our indigenous systems to conserve water?
Our indigenous knowledge systems followed a decentralised and holistic approach. Everything was looked at in its totality. We were part of nature.
Unfortunately, this world view to live in harmony with nature has been lost. And as we lose our underground aquifers and extract more and more water, we must realise that the patient has become very sick. Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about the Ganga being his mother. I would like to point out to him that his 'mother Ganga' is in ICU intensive care unit and the son is not doing anything for her. The drought situation is so intense that farmers are committing suicides across all our states because no alternative sources of water are being made available to them.
I was recently invited to Turkey where I was invited for a United Nations conference on how to combat desertification where I was the keynote speaker. It was attended by ministers of countries, but out environment minister was not present. I told this audience that if the relationship between water and soil is forgotten and there is no water in the soil, the soil will establish its relationship with air and the air will move this dry soil to create a desert. It is therefore imperative to establish a relationship between the soil, moisture and air and I gave them the examples of how I had helped rejuvenate seven rivers in Rajasthan.
From there I went to Israel to see how the government is using their water resources. In Israel, water has been placed in different categories. C class water is used to grow grains, B class water is used to grow fruits while A class water is used for growing vegetables and for drinking purposes.
'The Ganga is in ICU'
In India, A class water is being used to grow sugarcane. Ninety per cent of the water of the Ganga is being used to grow sugarcane. By now, the government should have initiated major steps to change our agricultural crop patterns. With our rain patterns becoming more erratic, the thrust should have been on growing drought resistant crops.
I am a firm votary of the fact that the present centralised water management system in our country has proved to be a disaster. The control of water must be handed over to communities and it has to become decentralised or we will face a water famine throughout the country.
Countries which waste water will suffer. After winning the Stockholm Prize for water this year, I undertook a padyatra around the Los Angeles area in California which is facing drought. I was invited by the former Red Indian community now referred to as a reserved community to help them overcome their water crisis. Earlier, 25, reserved Indians used to live around the Owens lake area whose water used to feed Los Angeles and other cities in California.
It is also a lifeline to millions of Indians who live along its course and depend on it for their daily needs. It is worshipped as the goddess Ganga in Hinduism. It has also been important historically, with many former provincial or imperial capitals such as Pataliputra, Kannauj, Kara, Kashi, Patna, Hajipur, Munger, Bhagalpur,Murshidabad, Baharampur, Kampilya, and Kolkata located on its banks. The Ganga was ranked as the fifth most polluted river of the world in Pollution threatens not only humans, but also more than fish species, 90 amphibian species and the endangered Ganges river dolphin.
The Ganga Action Plan, an environmental initiative to clean up the river, has been a major failure thus far, due to corruption, lack of technical expertise, poor environmental planning, and lack of support from religious authorities.
The Ganges begins at the confluence of the Bhagirathi and Alaknanda rivers. The Bhagirathi is considered to be the true source in Hindu culture and mythology, although the Alaknanda is longer. The headwaters of the Alakananda are formed by snowmelt from such peaks as Nanda Devi, Trisul, and Kamet. The Bhagirathi rises at the foot of Gangotri Glacier, at Gomukh, at an elevation of 3, m 12, ftbeing mythologically referred to as, residing in the matted locks of Shiva, symbolically Tapovan, being a meadow of ethereal beauty at the feet of Mount Shivling, just 5 km away.
Although many small streams comprise the headwaters of the Ganges, the six longest and their five confluences are considered sacred. The five confluences, known as the Panch Prayag, are all along the Alaknanda. They are, in downstream order, Vishnuprayag, where the Dhauliganga joins the Alaknanda; Nandprayag, where the Nandakini joins; Karnaprayag, where the Pindar joins, Rudraprayag, where the Mandakini joins; and finally, Devprayag, where the Bhagirathi joins the Alaknanda to form the Ganges River proper.
After flowing kilometres mi through its narrow Himalayan valley, the Ganges emerges from the mountains at Rishikesh, then debouches onto the Gangetic Plain at the pilgrimage town of Haridwar. At Haridwar, a dam diverts some of its waters into theGanges Canal, which irrigates the Doab region of Uttar Pradesh, whereas the river, whose course has been roughly southwest until this point, now begins to flow southeast through the plains of northern India.
The Ganges follows an kilometre mi arching course passing through the cities of Kannauj, Farukhabad, and Kanpur. After the Tamsa the Gomti River joins, flowing south from the Himalayas.
Just before the border with Bangladesh the Farakka Barrage controls the flow of the Ganges, diverting some of the water into a feeder canal linked to the Hooghly for the purpose of keeping it relatively silt-free. The Hooghly River is formed by the confluence of the Bhagirathi River and Jalangi River at Nabadwip, and Hooghly has a number of tributaries of its own. The largest is the Damodar River, which is km mi long, with a drainage basin of 25, km2 9, sq mi.
After entering Bangladesh, the main branch of the Ganges is known as the Padma. The Padma is joined by the Jamuna River, the largest distributary of the Brahmaputra. It stretches km mi along the Bay of Bengal. Only the Amazon and Congo rivers have a greater average discharge than the combined flow of the Ganges, the Brahmaputra, and theSurma-Meghna river system. In full flood only the Amazon is larger. The disintegration of the Harappan civilization, in the early 2nd millennium BC, mark the point when the center of Indian civilization shifted from the Indus basin to the Ganges basin.
This river is the longest in India. But the later three Vedas give much more importance to the Ganges. The first European traveler to mention the Ganges was Megasthenes ca. He did so several times in his work Indica: Now this river, which at its source is 30 stadia broad, flows from north to south, and empties its waters into the ocean forming the eastern boundary of theGangaridai, a nation which possesses a vast force of the largest-sized elephants.
In a water sharing dispute arose between India and Bangladesh then East Pakistanafter India declared its intention to build the Farakka Barrage. East Pakistan objected and a protracted dispute ensued.
In a year treaty was signed with Bangladesh. However, within a year the flow at Farakka fell to levels far below the historic average, making it impossible to implement the guaranteed sharing of water. Dry season flows returned to normal levels in the years following, but efforts were made to address the problem. One plan is for another barrage to be built in Bangladesh at Pangsha, west of Dhaka. This barrage would help Bangladesh better utilize its share of the waters of the Ganges.
Religious and cultural significance Embodiment of sacredness Ganga Aarti offered every evening at the Dashashwamedh Ghat, Varanasi The Ganga is a sacred river to Hindus along every fragment of its length. All along its course, Hindus bathe in its waters, paying homage to their ancestors and to their gods by cupping the water in their hands, lifting it and letting it fall back into the river; they offer flowers and rose petals and float shallow clay dishes filled with oil and lit with wicks diyas.
On the journey back home from the Ganga, they carry small quantities of river water with them for use in rituals ganga jal, literally water of the Ganga.
When a loved one dies, Hindus bring the ashes of the deceased person to the Ganga River. The Ganga is the embodiment of all sacred waters in Hindu mythology. Local rivers are said to be like the Ganga, and are sometimes called the local Ganga.
The Ganga is invoked whenever water is used in Hindu ritual, and is therefore present in all sacred waters.