The UP government plans to establish waterways on eight rivers for freight and public transport

The Uttar Pradesh government plans to use eight rivers as inland waterways to improve connectivity and transportation of goods, particularly bulk goods such as food grains and fertilizers. Senior state government officials said the Yamuna, Gomti, Assi, Ghaghra, Rapti Betwa, Chambal and Varuna rivers are used as waterways to transport goods and people.

The move is in line with the BJP-led centre’s Maritime India Vision 2030, which envisages increasing the share of inland shipping to five percent by 2030. Work to achieve the goal has already begun. The Uttar Pradesh government, led by Prime Minister Yogi Adityanath, wants to give the plan new impetus, officials said.

The proposed Waterways Authority will consist of officials from the Transport, Irrigation and Tourism Departments. However, the initial work to study potential waterways was assigned to Department of Transportation officials.

Transport Minister Dayashankar Singh told PTI on Saturday: “Mother Nature has blessed Uttar Pradesh with so many rivers. The potential of these rivers has been neglected in the past. We strive to make the rivers more usable for the public. The waterway development plan is a step in that direction.”

According to a report by the Indian government, inland waterways are the most economical mode of transport, especially for bulk commodities such as coal, iron ore, cement, food grains and fertilizers.

“The plan is in the first collection phase. The modalities will be determined according to the study and feasibility on different rivers. However, we are moving forward with the intention of realizing the goal of strengthening and widening the waterways,” added Singh.

Inland shipping accounts for two percent of India’s transport mix. According to the Maritime India Vision 2030, the center intends to increase the proportion to five percent.

The recent Ganga Vilas luxury cruise, which departed from Varanasi and traveled over 3,200 kilometers through 27 river systems in India and Bangladesh, has given a major boost to the plan to use the waterways for public transport.

“The plan is in the first collection phase. The modalities will be determined according to the study and feasibility on different rivers. However, we are moving forward with the intention of realizing the goal of strengthening and widening the waterways,” added Singh.

Inland shipping accounts for two percent of India’s transport mix. According to the Maritime India Vision 2030, the center intends to increase the proportion to five percent.

The recent Ganga Vilas luxury cruise, which departed from Varanasi and traveled over 3,200 kilometers through 27 river systems in India and Bangladesh, has given a major boost to the plan to use the waterways for public transport.

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