In what could be termed positive news for the Clean Ganga project, Ravi Kulkarni, who serves as the whole time director of Pratibha Group of Companies, feels that the project has the potential to generate revenue in the range of INR 30,000 to 40,000 crore. The organization is working in several sectors and is viewing this project as a major opportunity to make a mark. Incidentally, the organization is also collaborating with Delhi Jal Board (DJB), which happens to be a water supply and sewage disposal network and it feels that by dint of this association it can be regarded as being capable of executing the project efficiently.
Pratibha Group targets a revenue of INR 40,000 crore
Kulkarni has further stated that for a company of Pratibha Group’s stature it is important to be a part of the project considering the immense budget of the entire exercise. He also feels that this is a big opportunity for all the other companies that are part of the project. One more reason the organization thinks that the project could be financially rewarding is its potential reach, especially in the rural areas.
He feels that in States such as Rajasthan, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh the project has immense capability to achieve something big. He feels that one reason the Clean Ganga programme has attracted so much attention is the overall importance the river has in the life of a majority of the country’s population. In all, the Pratibha Group director feels that the sector has immense potential and he feels that it can benefit a lot of companies and not just his organization.
Kulkarni has further stated that his company is looking to make the most of the association given the fact that it is already acquainted with the sector. In addition, drainage happens to be the chief area of the organization’s expertise as well as the major driver of revenue. The company at the moment is looking at revenues in the range of INR 2,000-3,000 crore.
However, it would also be interesting to note in this context that the company has recently received a downgrade from CRISIL, which has also downgraded Pratibha’s stocks to negative. Kulkarni has defended this position saying that Pratibha is not the only organization that is passing through such a stage right now – the market as a whole is in a less than favourable condition.
He has stated that the company is abreast of the goings-on in the market and this is the reason why it has adopted an aggressive policy in taking on projects. The organization has also procured a contract outside India of late and the director feels that this will release some pressure off the company. He has also said that the organization will come out of the rut in the next couple of months, which is expected to provide some relief to its shareholders. He has also pointed out that the company has been a consistent performer and the fluctuations in ranking are just part and parcel of the business. In fact, he feels that all the leading companies in India are facing pressure now in the stock market.
RSS deploys volunteers for Ganga project
The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh has brought in several young men to help with the Clean Ganga project. In the initial stages the outfit will ask its young volunteers to create awareness among the people who are living on the banks of the river in Uttarakhand. This will be done as per a programme named Ganga Samagrah. The party has been able to bring in 5,000 youths from across 200 colleges in the State. It had also organized a camp during the last week of November. The camp ended on November 30 and was organized at Haridwar.
Sources in the Sangh are of the opinion that the Ganga Samagrah programme is a standalone one in the context of the Clean Ganga project. They are of the opinion that the project should be allowed to run its own course and this is one of the various programmes that the RSS has instituted for the betterment of the society. As part of the Ganga Samagrah programme the volunteers of the RSS will be active in the towns of districts such as Uttarkashi, Rudraprayag, Chamoli, Haridwar and Tehri Garhwal.
These are important regions in the sense that the Ganga as well as several of its tributaries happen to pass through them. It is also expected that along with the local people the volunteers will be interacting with the tourists to persuade them not dump dirt in the river. The volunteers themselves have expressed a sense of happiness in being able to be associated with the project considering the importance the Ganga has for the State.
The source of the Ganga is Gaumukh in Uttarakhand and from there it covers a distance of 2,525 km to reach the Bay of Bengal.
Ganga River Basin Authority is working on 57 plants
Over the years, the river has been polluted by human establishments, industrial units and hotels. As per the estimates of the National Ganga River Basin Authority, the river acts as the dumping ground of sewage amounting to 3,000 million litres on a daily basis and only about 30% of this sewage is treated. This staggering statistic shows the magnitude of the work facing the entities that are endeavouring to complete the project within the next 18 years.
Previously, the BJP Government in Uttarakhand had started the Sparsh Ganga plan in order to clean up the river but it came a cropper. At the moment the Ganga River Basin Authority is working on 57 plants that will be able to treat 470.53 million litres sewage on a daily basis together. Fifteen of these projects are located in Uttarakhand itself.