CHANDIGARH, FEBRUARY 14: Expressing concern over the growing river water pollution in the state, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Thursday announced a comprehensive action plan to check pollution of waters in Rivers Beas and Satluj, besides steps to restore the water quality of the state’s rivers.

Responding to a call attention by MLA Kotkapura Kultar Singh Sandhwan, the Chief Minister said that given its seriousness, the state government would also take up the issue with the Centre.

Reiterating his government’s firm commitment to restore the water quality of the state’s rivers, Captain Amarinder Singh said that he had already constituted a Committee under the chairmanship of the Chief Secretary, with the concerned Administrative Secretaries as members for regular monitoring of the measures to control pollution of the river water. He assured the House that the State government would make all out efforts to check river pollution in a result-oriented and effective manner.

Listing some of the major steps initiated by the State to check river water pollution, the Chief Minister said that 11 STPs had already been installed in 19 towns, and 12 new STPs would be installed in 10 towns by December 31, 2020. One STP was being upgraded and would be made functional by December 31, 2019, treatment ponds will be provided in 125 villages by June 30, 2020, and 350 cusecs of water would be released from Mukerian Hydel Channel into the Holy Bein.

The Chief Minister also outlined several measures undertaken for cleaning of River Sutlej, which included installation of 51 STPs in 27 towns to prevent sewage of these towns from being discharged in the river, with 33 new STPs to be installed in 31 towns by December 31, 2021. Apart from these, treatment ponds would be provided in 286 villages by January 31, 2022, he said.

Captain Amarinder Singh further told the House that urban and rural treated sewage would be used for irrigation and three Common Effluent Treatment Plants for the dyeing industries in Ludhiana would be commissioned by January 31, 2020. Upgradation of existing CETPs of tanneries and leather complex in Jalandhar would be done by March 31, 2020, he said, adding that Effluent Treatment Plants (ETPs) would be set up for the dairy complexes of Ludhiana and Jalandhar, along with a Bio Gas Plant for the dairy complex at Jalandhar, by September 30, 2021. Modernisation of the existing slaughter house at Ludhiana would be completed by September 30, 2019, he announced.

Further, said the Chief Minister, the STPs established by the Government and the polluting industries would be monitored online, through CCTVs to be installed at some select locations by December 31, 2019. An effective Management Information System to monitor the progress of various works and measures initiated by different departments to check river water pollution was being developed, he added.

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