"Eco Friends performs all such acts that may assist in or be conducive to fostering environmental education, protection and security".

Eco Friends, a Kanpur based non-governmental organisation (NGO), has been working in a sustained way over the last fifteen years on critical issues of environmental degradation. A key issue for Eco Friends is protecting the river Ganga from various sources of pollution. Eco Friends has been involved in generating mass awareness and deepening of national and international public debate on pollution-related issues, mobilizing the local communities in sustained high-pitched campaigns, focused action such as clean Ganga campaigns, legal activism through public interest litigation and persistent advocacy with media, opinion makers and other stakeholders. Though the extent of environment degradation is still worrying, Eco Friends has due achievements in a number of areas including passing of landmark judicial pronouncements to check river pollution and initiation of remedial steps by industry and government alike. The concern at the moment is to consolidate and build on the gains with a long-term perspective on the larger issue of environmental management in India.

Eco Friends has always had the support of several volunteers from various sections of society.

Think Tank

Rakesh K. Jaiswal

Founder and Executive Secretary : Has been involved in environmental activism since 1993. Has been extremely successful in generating mass awareness and widespread attention to the plight of Ganga at Kanpur. A tireless campaigner for Ganga, Rakesh has lectured widely both nationally and internationally to help focus attention on the urgent need to act for Ganga. As a freelance journalist, has written extensively on the issue of river pollution. Involved in environmental litigation against the state of Uttar Pradesh and Government of India and various polluting industries, several landmark judgments have been passed in his case to address the issue of pollution in the river Ganga and strengthening the Ganga Action Plan. Featured in various international documentaries and recipient of the Unsung Heroes of Compassion award by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, through Wisdom in Action, a California based Foundation .Rakesh is also an Ashoka Fellow.


Dr. A. C. Shukla

Dr. A. C. Shukla , formerly headed Bio-pollution Study Centre at Christ Church College, Kanpur. He specializes in environmental sciences and policy planning. He has completed a major project of Ganga Action Plan. Dr Shukla is credited with over 250 research publications and has several edited and original books. He has widely traveled in connection with addressing, chairing and acting as discussant at International conferences. His area of current research is environmental and water security. Dr Shukla is currently visiting scholar at ACDIS, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr Shukla, the Founder President of Eco Friends is now a member of the Advisory Panel.

Dr Binayak Rath, Professor of Economics, IIT Kanpur

Dr Binayak Rath, Professor of Economics in the Department of Humanities and Social Science at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur had received his Ph.D. degree from IIT Kanpur in 1980 in the area of Social Benefit-Cost Analysis. In 1985-86, he was a faculty of the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow The teaching and research interests of Dr Rath in the area of Economics include Benefit-Cost Analysis, Development Economics, Rural Development, Economics of Alternative Energy, Environmental Impact Assessment, and Water Resource Management. Presently, he is working on environmental issues dealing with land management in the urban areas as well as in the command areas of few major irrigation projects. He's been associated with Eco Friends since 2003 and has actively participated in its activities. He's a member of the Advisory Panel of Eco Friends.

Dr. Tapan Routh, an Environmental Expert and Scientist

Dr Tapan Routh has expertise in Environmental science and Pollution Control, Water & Wastewater Treatment, Hazardous Waste Management, River Water Quality Assessment & Monitoring, Environmental Impact Assessment, Environmental Audit, etc. He worked as Scientist with National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), Nagpur and as Sr. Assistant Director & Head of NEERI Zonal Laboratory, Kanpur till his retirement in 2003. He has been involved actively with Eco Friends for almost a decade. He is a member of Advisory Panel of Eco Friends.

Dr Padma S Vanka

She is working as Senior Project Scientist in “Facility for Ecological and Analytical Testing” a R&D laboratory, in IIT Kanpur. She is engaged in environment related issues such as estimation and remediation of Pesticide, Heavy metal contaminations and polyhalogenated compounds. She has been consultant to Centre for Science and Environment, New Delhi for setting up their Pollution Monitoring Laboratory and for the preparation of Laboratory Manual as per EPA standards 2000-2002.Her association as consultant to Eco Friends Society, Kanpur on various Pollution monitoring issues has been since 2000. She has participated in most of Eco Friends' activities and is an active member of Eco friends' Advisory Panel.

Dr Vandana Asthana

Dr Vandana Asthana is the Head of the Political Science Department and Environmental Studies Unit, Christ Church College, Kanpur. Her area of specialization has been Environmental Politics and Security. She recently completed a Project on India's Water Resources and Implications for National Security. She developed a course on WATER SECURITY in SOUTH ASIA. She is presently at the Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences Department at UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS, Urbana-Champaign, engaged in research on water conflicts and security with special reference to corporatization and commodification of water. Dr. Vandana has co-authored a book “Ganga – The Water Marvel”. Dr. Vandana, the founder General Secretary of Eco- Friends, is now a member of Eco Friends' Advisory Panel.

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