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SC stays Uttarakhand HC order declaring rivers Ganga and Yamuna as 'living entities'

In a major victory for the Uttarakhand government, the Supreme Court on Friday stayed the order passed by the Uttarakhand High Court declaring rivers Ganga and Yamuna —  considered holy by Hindus across India — as living entities.

According to ANI, the Uttarkhand government had challenged the 20 March order on the basis of a question whether victims can claim compensation from the chief secretary of the state in case of casualties during floods.

On 20 March, a division bench of Justices Rajeev Sharma and Alok Singh of the high court had said, "Holy rivers Ganga and Yamuna have been declared to be treated as living human entities."

The court had cited the example of river Whanganui in New Zealand which has been given such status.

Giving the "legal status" of living humans to the holy rivers, the court had ordered the director of the Namami Gange project to clean and rejuvenate the river, adding that the chief secretary and the advocate general of Uttarakhand will act as the "legal parents" of the holy rivers and work as the human face to protect, conserve and preserve them and their tributaries.

These officers will be bound to "uphold the status" of the two rivers and also promote their "health and well-being", the court had said.

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Jul 07, 2017 14:30 PM

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