03 May 2023, New Delhi: In yet another novel initiative under the Arth Ganga concept, the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) in association with HESCO recently launched ‘Ganga Bhog – Gangotri se GangaSagar Tak’ in Rishikesh.
At the core of the initiative lies Ganga Bhog through 5 M’s– synthesis of Mother (Ganga), Mandir, Mitti, Mahila, and Mota-Anaj or Millets. The idea is that local Millet items produced in the fertile soil (Mitti) on the Ganga River banks by local women (Mahila) are offered as Prasad Bhog to the temples (Mandir) on the banks of Maa Ganga. The concept has been conceived in the wake of not so healthy Prasad offerings in the Ganga Basin in the form of rice, batasha’s and sugar balls usually brought from urban areas, many times outside the Ganga basin.
The initiative, therefore, gives impetus to both livelihood generation for local women Millet farmers and facilitates healthy hand-made Bhog offerings for Maa Ganga (Vocal for Local). This is also in line with United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declaration of 2023 as ‘International Year of Millets’ (IYM). The Prime Minister has called for a mass movement in the country to promote Millets. NMCG’s recent endeavor aims to make Ganga Basin a Millet Basin in the coming years through the promotion of natural farming.
NMCG is working on its six verticals of Arth Ganga, which are Zero Budget Natural Farming generating “More net Income, Per Drop”, ‘Gobar Dhan’ for farmers, b) Monetization and Reuse of Sludge & Wastewater, c) Livelihood Generation Opportunities, d) Public Participation, e) Cultural Heritage & Tourism and f) Institutional Building. Furthermore, Jalaj, inaugurated on 16 August 2021 by the hon’ble Union minister for Jal Shakti, provides livelihood to people linked with Ganga.
On the Prasad scheme, G. Asok Kumar said that rural women communities must be employed and the local grains “Mota Anaj” must be utilized for creating Prasad for temples on the river banks. This would benefit local women and people while saving the environment.
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