When Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji, Founder of Ganga Action Parivar, completed 60 years of life, everyone wanted to give Him birthday presents. He, however, declared that there is nothing He wants, nothing He needs, but that the only gift He would like is for people to commit themselves to the following ‘6T’ program (6T’s for six-ty years of life).
Ganga Action Parivar’s 6T’s program provides a foundation for a cleaner, greener, more sustainable Ganga and environment. Through its comprehensive, interlinked programs, we are working to help the people, animals and ecology of the watershed not only survive, but thrive. In so doing, GAP has identified six categories of outreach that are designed to complement each other:
Some 450 million people live in the Ganga River Basin, many of whom have no sanitary facilities. This is not only embarrassing, but also presents a security threat to women and girls in particular. At the same time, populations are forced to use the Ganga as a toilet out of necessity, fouling Her waters and potentially spreading disease.
In the Ganga River Basin, trash is often disposed of directly in, or near the river, endangering wildlife, plants, and human populations, while also spoiling the appearance of what should be pristine waters. Ganga Action Parivar is working to remove existing pollution (namely, solid waste) along the banks of Ganga, Her tributaries and the surrounding environment, preventing this waste from washing into the rivers and choking life from them, as well as preventing the waste from leaching its harmful chemicals into the soil and groundwater.
Trees are crucial to life, providing shade, oxygen and fruit. Their roots prevent erosion of soil, while also helping to prevent landslides. Their leaves release 90% of their water into the air, adding crucial levels of humidity to the environment. Yet, to meet the needs of rapidly expanding populations, far too many have been cut down, robbing the Ganga River Basin of its key benefactor.
Access to clean and safe drinking water is a basic human right. Yet, in India alone, thousands of children die, and many more are sickened, by waterborne diseases such as typhoid, dysentery and cholera. Hundreds of villages along the banks of Ganga have no access to fresh, clean, safe drinking water. Adding to the problem are contaminated and shrinking groundwater tables alongside untamed pollution in the Ganga.
The Indian train network is one of the most impressive in the world, yet also one of the dirtiest. All along the lengths of the train tracks, garbage is thrown carelessly along the tracks, including plastic and polythene which pollute the environment and endangers wildlife. Many tracks have become like open sewers, as waste from the trains is emptied directly onto the tracks, and railway stations often lack proper sanitation as well.
Under Ganga Action Parivar’s 6T’s program, “Tigers” stands for all endangered animals inhabiting the Ganga River Basin. One of the reasons the tigers and other species in India are threatened is due to the loss and destruction of their natural habitat. Thus, we are committed to protecting and preserving the natural habitat of tigers and other wild animals, thereby saving their lives and also saving our natural resources.
Click here to download our 6T’s brochure!