National River Conservation Directorate
Ministry of Jal Shakti
Department of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation
Government of India

National River Conservation Plan


The Central Government started the river pollution abatement programme with the launching of the Ganga Action Plan (GAP-I) in the year 1985. Subsequently, the GAP Phase II was launched in 1993 for pollution abatement of river Yamuna and Gomti, major tributaries of river Ganga. The river pollution abatement programme was further expanded to include other major rivers of the country in 1995 under the aegis of National River Conservation Plan (NRCP).

Finally in December 1996, GAP Phase II was also merged with the NRCP and all projects for river cleaning in the country was brought under one umbrella scheme of NRCP. The objective of NRCP is to reduce the pollution load in rivers through implementation of various pollution abatement works, thereby improving their water quality. The projects submitted by the State Governments are taken up under NRCP depending upon the degree of pollution in the river, the designated best use of the river stretch as well as the priority of the State Government, formulation of the project as per NRCP guidelines, commitment of the State Government to bear its share of capital cost and full O&M cost of the project as well as availability of funds under the Plan.

The pollution abatement works taken up under the NRCP include: (i) Interception and diversion works/ laying of sewerage systems to capture raw sewage flowing into the rivers through open drains and diverting them for treatment.
(ii) Setting up of Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) for treating the diverted sewage
(iii) Construction of Low Cost Sanitation Toilets to prevent open defecation on river banks
(iv) Construction of Electric Crematoria and Improved Wood Crematoria to conserve the use of wood
(v) River Front Development works, such as improvement of bathing ghats
(vi) Public participation & awareness and capacity building, etc.

With effect from 1.8.2014, all works relating to Ganga and its tributaries have been transferred to the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation. The Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change is presently implementing the works for pollution abatement of rivers, other than Ganga and its tributaries.