The Politics of Pilgrimage Site

ganga India Emerging as a country where any issue could be easily politicized and can be used for political gains. River Ganga in such territory is also a victim. It is thoroughly used for having promises and remembered only in time of election by those who claims to be protector. The icy cavern Gaumukh situated nearly 13,000ft in up hills of Himalayas is somehow looks like “Cow mouth” is one of the most sacred place in Hinduism and it the source of river Ganga, which is itself considered as the goddess and worshipped widely by 800 million Hindus. Diana Eck, the religious scholar from Harvard describes Ganga as “the archetype of sacred waters”. apart from these it is the source of water to 40 percent of of Indian population, it flows through 11 states and serves more then 500 million life across India. It also holds different social values and is deeply rooted in Indian culture. It serves as the SANGAM  of various culture, depicted as the matter of pride and symbol of purity too. Significance of Ganga is different near diverse groups. For farmers it is most worthy and is life saving river. It is the totem of peace and unity for seculars where as for majority it is the mother and the holy river which washed out all the sins and makes the soul pure. Extremist use Ganga to burn sentiments and to polarize communities against another and for the politicians it is the solid issue to consolidate votes. Industrialists treat as a gutter whereas it is subject of study near environmentalists. For some its a mean of earning and for some it is just a pool. Almost all Indian is somehow engaged with the Ganga either economically socially politically or emotionally. But tragedy with Ganga is that it is continuously shrinking. The Gangotri glacier which provides 70 percent water during the dry summer months is shrinking at the rate of 40 yards per year says studies. Reports of Scientists and meteorologists are claiming that if soon proper measures will not taken then it will not even last for next generation. According to UN climate report the source of Ganga would disappear if temperature continues to rise. Global warming is great threat to Ganga but the political parties are even great threat to it. There has been more then 20,000 crore rupees spent in past 28 years in the name of cleaning and protecting Ganga and yet scores of dead bodies flowing in river can be commonly found. With the change in Government in July 2014 the hope arises, separate ministry to look all affairs of Ganga is formed 2,037 crore rupees allocated under the new project titled “Namani Ganga” but yet all efforts to clean Ganga are only taking inside the five star office and all work is only on paper nothing implementation on ground  has been since observed. Questions like who is responsible for such terrible condition of Ganga becomes irrelevant because there is no more time left for those. If proper measures will not taken today then surely no Ganga will remain tomorrow and will no biological lives who are engaged with the Ganga.    (Anwarul Hoda, Economics (H) 2nd Yr)


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