Traffic Expansion in National Waterway-1 | 24 Dec 2022

Why in News?

  • On December 23, 2022, Sudhanshu Pant, Officer on Special Duty, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways of Uttar Pradesh, told a Trade meet on Traffic Expansion in National Waterway-1 at Circuit House, Varanasi that Cargo Ships will start operating from Varanasi to Dibrugarh (Bogibeel), the longest Waterway in the country, from January 2023.

Key Points

  • Inland Waterways Authority of India will prepare Varanasi-Ghazipur-Majhauan-Barh Waterway on the lines of Patna-Farakka Waterway. Night Navigation System will also be developed for 24-hour smooth movement of Ships on this Waterway.
  • He informed that with the operation of Cargo Ships from Varanasi, initiatives will be taken to promote export of GI products of Purvanchal by connecting it with Waterways. The Waterways Authority will prepare its Action Plan by taking suggestions from Central and State Government Departments for maximum use of National Waterway-1.
  • In the meeting, Kaushal Raj Sharma, Divisional Commissioner of the State Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, said that various types of grains are exported from Varanasi, for which the Waterway will be used soon. At the same time, if the Ministry of Commerce and Industry provides details of the products exported to South-East Asian countries and their routes, then the export through Varanasi Waterway will be even more enriched.
  • A representative of the Indian Farmers Fertilizer Cooperation suggested 24-hour operation of Ships in the Ganga to ensure timely export of fertilizers and Urea through Waterways. Officials in the Ministry of Waterways agreed to the proposal.
  • Waterways Authority Vice Chairman Jayant Singh said that The Varanasi-Kolkata Waterway is available for operation 300 days a year. This Ganga Vilas will prove to be a milestone in promoting tourism of Varanasi. In this, from January 10 to January 13, the passengers of Ganga Vilas will be given Kashi Darshan.
  • He said that from April, preparations have been started to operate Solar Water Taxis connecting the ghats of Kashi. The tender will be issued next month and will be operated on a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model. A detailed action plan is being prepared for the development of Varanasi-Kolkata and Dibrugarh Waterways.