Ganga waterway project cleared after overruling expert panel

What is Important?
From UPSC Perspectives
Prelims :Key facts
Mains:Highlights & Significance

Why in News?

India’s longest waterway project, one terminal of which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi .

Key facts

  • Government’s ambitious plan to make stretches of the 2,500-km-long Ganga suitable for transporting containers, it decided to make navigable a 1,390-km stretch of the river between Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh and Haldia in West Bengal.
  • The project entails construction of 3 multimodal terminals (Varanasi, Sahibganj and Haldia); 2 intermodal terminals; 5 Roll On–Roll Off (Ro-Ro) terminal pairs; a new navigation lock at Farakka; assured depth dredging; an integrated vessel repair and maintenance facility; a Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS); a River Information System (RIS); and ‘river training’ and river conservancy works.
  • The ₹5,369 crore project is partly funded by the World Bank.
  • To enable container barges and ships to carry at least 2,000 tonnes, the project requires the river bed to be dredged to enable a minimum draft of three metres along the river, as well as to make the river channel at least 45 metres wide.
  • It is India's first container movement on inland vessel post-independence.
  • The first container vessel had sailed from Kolkata for Varanasi , carrying cargo belonging to PepsiCo (India) on the Ganga river. 


  • It will be a critical addition to the country's infrastructure and will boost economy. 
  • It will help correct India's transport modal mix that imposes huge logistics cost on the economy. 
  • To develop the stretch of the river between Varanasi and Haldia for navigation of large vessels weighing up to 1,500 to 2,000 tonnes
  • The project is to promote inland waterways as a cheap and environment-friendly means of transportation
  • The Varanasi terminal will reinforce a major transport artery of India. It will enable movement of cargo from Ludhiana in Punjab to Haldia in West Bengal and further east as it will complement the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor (EDFC) project. EDFC is a freight-specific railway corridor which will run from Ludhiana to Dankuni in West Bengal.
  •  The major logistics boost in the eastern India will also favour India's trade with its eastern neighbours. National Waterways 1, along with proposed EDFC and NH-2, constitutes the eastern transport corridor of India connecting the National Capital Region (NCR) with the eastern and north-eastern states. It will function as a link to Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Nepal and other east and south-east Asian countries through the Kolkata Port and Indo-Bangladesh Protocol Route.

Ganga waterway project cleared after overruling expert panel Ganga waterway project cleared after overruling expert panel Reviewed by The Hindu Current Affairs on November 18, 2018 Rating: 5

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