Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday announced that his government had finalised a six-point action plan to clean up the Yamuna by February 2025 and had begun work on it on a war-footing to accomplish the mission as promised by the Aam Aadmi Party during the last assembly elections.
His government’s Yamuna cleaning mission includes enhancing the city’s sewage treatment capacity and improving the sewage network, cleaning up major drains, de-silting storm-water drains, and taking strict action against the guilty industrial units releasing untreated waste into the river.
Kejriwal said, “The river that has been dirtied for the past 70 years could not be cleaned up in just two days. It will take time. It will have clean water again before the next assembly polls and I along with you will take a dip into it.”
Elaborating on the Yamuna cleaning mission, he said the first point in the action plan was to ensure that the untreated sewage that went into the Yamuna must be treated before it reached the river. The capacity of the city’s sewage treatment plants (STPs) will be increased to around 850 mgd (million gallons per day) from the existing capacity of 600 mgd.
The existing STPs will get new technology and their capacity will also be enhanced. Besides this, new sewage treatment plants (the Coronation plant and the ones being set up at Okhla, Kondli, Rithala, and some other places are being installed to achieve the objective (10 by 10 cleaning standard).
Two, de-silting of the city’s drains will be done in-situ where it is required. Four drains, including those at Najafgarh, Badshahpur, Ghazipur, and the supplementary one, are to be de-silted and some drains will change their course so that there is smooth flow of sewage
into the drains.
Kejriwal pointed out that the third point was to ensure that industrial sewage that goes untreated into the Yamuna would not be allowed. The industrial units found to be doing so will be severely punished and will face closure too.
Four, the government will make arrangements for ensuring the flow of waste from Jan Suvidha (community toilets) complexes in jhuggi-jhopri clusters into the sewer lines instead of allowing it to go into storm-water drains as is the situation now.
Five, it has been found in many areas that a sewer network is there, but people have not taken sewer connections as the situation exists in some trans-Yamuna colonies. The government will now provide a sewer
connection to every house in such areas on its own to take sewage into
the sewer network.
Six, all the sewer networks in the city will be de-silted and rehabilitated where it is necessary by February 2025.