Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat at the announcement of the Ganga Calling expedition in New Delhi on Monday. Photo/ANI
Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat at the announcement of the Ganga Calling expedition in New Delhi on Monday. Photo/ANI

Gajendra Shekhawat announces the 'Ganga Calling' expedition from Devprayag to Ganga Sagar

ANI | Updated: Oct 07, 2019 22:29 IST

New Delhi [India], Oct 7 (ANI): Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Monday announced that a month-long river rafting expedition between Devprayag in Uttarakhand to Ganga Sagar in West Bengal will be held between October 10 and November 12.
"The expedition will begin from Devprayag in Uttrakhand on October 10 and culminate at Frazerganj in West Bengal on November 12. A team of valiant and seasoned achievers from armed forces accompanied by scientists are undertaking this Ganga calling expedition," Shekhawat said at a press conference here.
This is the first-ever effort by National Mission for Clean Ganga to raft across the entire stretch of the river and also the longest ever social campaign undertaken through an adventure sporting activity to raise awareness about the ecological problems in Ganga.
Praising the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and calling the need for public participation, Shekhawat said, "During the last five years under the leadership of the Prime Minister the government has carried out various initiatives in order to restore Ganga's aviralta (non-stop flow) and nirmalta (softness) and it has started to show positive results. But any such movement that needs sustainability cannot be achieved until and unless it becomes a public movement."
"In order to connect with the various stakeholders directly or indirectly to Ganga, this mega event is being organised," he added.
A nine-member team of swimmers and rafters from the three Services of the armed forces, led by acclaimed international open-water swimmer Wing Commander Paramvir Singh will take part in the expedition. This nine-member team would be joined by three members from NDRF, and two members each from Wildlife Institute of India and CSIR-IITR, according to a statement from the Jal Shakti ministry.
Throughout the course of the expedition, the team will participate in numerous events, some of which include attending painting and slogan competitions on theme of Ganga rejuvenation and water conservation, educating youth on topics such as water footprint, wetlands and biodiversity conservation etc.
It will also conduct water testing through kits provided by Indian Institute of Toxicology Research (IITR) and celebrate festivals along with conducting public outreach programs during the expedition.
The expedition will be supported by all the stakeholders of Namami Gange including the MPs of the constituency along Ganga, members of Ganga Praharis, Ganga Vichar Manch among others with an aim to reach millions of people on Ganga Basin. (ANI)