The River Ganges , also known as the Ganga , flows from the Himalaya mountains to the Bay of Bengal in northern India and Bangladesh. Regarded as sacred by Hindus, the river is personified as the goddess Ganga in ancient texts and art. Ritual bathing in the Ganges was and is an important part of Hindu pilgrimage and the ashes of the cremated are often spread across her waters. In sacred texts, the ganges is described as the 'best of rivers, born of all the sacred waters', the Ganges is personified as the goddess Ganga. Ganga's mother is Mena and her father is Himavat, the personification of the Himalaya mountains. The Ganges is considered a tirtha which means a crossing point between heaven and earth. At a tirtha, prayers and offerings are thought most likely to reach the gods and, in the other direction, blessings can descend most readily from heaven. One of the most sacred sites in India is alongside the Ganges at Varanasi. Here, in one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world, there is the Hindu Golden Temple , dedicated to Shiva. The site is most famous as a place of religious ritual, cremation, and the spreading of ashes upon the sacred river. Present day Ganges has suffered a great deal from pollution. For the past 30 years, there have been plans put in place to clean the river, but none have proven successful. The major sources of pollution to the ganges include: industrial waste, human waste,
and remains from religious ceremonies. The current plan in place is National Mission Clean Ganga. It was established in 2011. The major aims and objectives are: 1. To ensure effective abatement of pollution and rejuvenation of the river Ganga 2. To maintain minimum ecological flows in the river with the aim of ensuring water quality and environmentally sustainable development. These are the 5 basin states. These are the states that are actively participating in National Mission Clean Ganga. Namami gange consists of 8 key objectives . The first is creating and increasing sewage treatment capacity. Work is under construction for creating a total Sewerage capacity of 1,100 million liters a day. Currently, almost 300 million liters of sewage is produced every day, and only one third of that is treated.
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- Ganges, The River Ganges