Just like ‘Maa Ganga’ in Varanasi, the two rivers Balason and Mahananda in Siliguri is the natural thread that binds the people of our region together.
Mahananda and Balason rivers originate from the foothills of hills near Dudhey and Shivakhola, and flow through the heart of Siliguri city onto Kawakhali, Fulbari, Phansidewa, Bidhan Nagar, Galgalia before entering Bihar and merging with Maa Ganga, connecting people from all walks of life in our region.
However, due to the neglect of the state government, encroachment along river beds, illegal mining, sand mafia and the absence of comprehensive water management plans and policies, our rivers are gradually dying.
These rivers are not just source of water, they carry immense cultural significance in the region.
Since the West Bengal government and Siliguri Municipal Corporation has failed to take concrete steps to protect and rejuvenate these rivers, today I have requested Jal Shakti Ministry to help develop a Comprehensive River Rejuvenation and Management Plan for Balason and Mahanadi rivers.
Doing so will help protect our environment, our cultural heritage and important sources of drinking water in our region.
A proper management plan, with development of river fronts of both Mahananda and Balason can be worked out, which will not only help in protecting the rivers from further encroachments, but it will also help attract additional tourists to the region.