Sonowal asks for measures to prevent embankment breaches in flood-hit Assam

Guwahati, July 30 (IANS) In the wake of the devastating floods, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has directed the Chief Secretary to constitute an Embankment Protection Committee to avert breaches in any river embankment.

Sonowal said that the Embankment Protection Committee would comprise engineers, experts, youth organisations, NGOs, clubs and socio-cultural organisations will help to avert breaches in embankment with timely intervention.

The Chief Minister also asked the Water Resources Department to go in for thorough and in-depth inspection of the condition of around 1,200 embankments covering a stretch of 500 km so that strengthening and repairing of the old embankments could be carried out.

The Chief Minister directed officials of the Water Resources Department to conduct proper inspection of the embankments across the state and submit project estimates by August next so that revetment of embankments can start from September onwards.

He instructed them to hold review meetings regularly near the site of the embankments.

Sonowal also directed the Water Resources Department to initiate steps to constitute Embankment Monitoring Committee at local level to keep a close eye on the embankments, particularly in susceptible and vulnerable areas to avert any disaster. He said that all the data of embankments should be displayed for information of the general public.

It may be mentioned here that conventional embankments in Assam have failed in controlling floods in the state and other eastern Indian states. While Brahmaputra is the main river in Assam there are above 100 of its tributaries. There are over 4,400 km of embankments in Assam and most of them have expired their life terms.

Meanwhile, Assam Chief Secretary V.K. Pipersenia, DGP Mukesh Sahay and Principal Chief Conservator of Forest, Darash Mathur have decided to contribute a week’s salary towards the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund for the benefit of flood hit people.

Pipersenia also appealed to officers and employees of all the departments to contribute generously towards the flood affected people of the state.

On Saturday, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh surveyed the flood affected areas of the state, where 36 lakh people have been affected across 28 districts, while 26 people have died due to floods.



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