National Ganga Council (NGC)
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Environment Conservation
- The National Ganga Council (NGC), which is headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi met for the first time at Kanpur since its inception in 2016, with the proposal to save and enhance the population of the Gangetic Dolphin
- The council also discussed the concept of “River Cities” and an action plan to provide sewer connection to every household in towns along the Ganga and its tributaries.
- The council consists of chief ministers from five states along the Ganga — Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Uttarakhand, Bihar and Jharkhand along with nine Union ministers and NITI Aayog vice-chairman.
- The central objective of the council is to work on the “protection, prevention, control and abatement of environmental pollution in River Ganga and its rejuvenation to its natural and pristine condition and to ensure continuous adequate flow of water”.
About Gangetic River Dolphins
- The Gangetic river dolphins were officially discovered in 1801 and are one of the oldest creatures in the world along with some species of turtles, crocodiles and sharks, according to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
- In 2009, the Gangetic dolphins were declared India’s National Aquatic animal
- It is placed under the “endangered” category by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
- The Gangetic river dolphins can only live in freshwater and prefer deep waters
- They are blind and catch their prey in a unique manner, using ultrasonic sound waves.