The Associated Press, November 24, 2006
NEW DELHI: The Hindu holy river Ganges is deeply polluted and US.$1.5 billion (€1.15 billion) is needed to clean it, India's environment minister said Friday.
Answering questions in Parliament, Environment and Forest Minister A. Raja said that even though some US$300 million (€230 million) had already been spent to clean the river, little progress had been achieved and more money was needed.
The river, revered by Hindus as a goddess, has become increasingly contaminated as industries have dumped waste and cities pumped sewage into it.
However, Raja said action was being taken against offenders and 237 factories have been closed down and another 600 served notice for failing to put safeguards in place.