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news details
JK engineers fail to take preventive measures for floods
Govt seeks help of foreign experts
7/21/2019 11:07:07 PM
Ishtiyaq Ahmad
Srinagar, July 21: It seems that engineers in Jammu and Kashmir are not capable enough to make project reports as the authorities have hired foreign experts to conduct a study on water bodies in Kashmir for prevention of floods.
Post 2014 floods, the government made tall claims to prevent such disasters in the future. However, the government's announcements have been confined to papers only.
Even the engineers of Irrigation and Flood Control Department have failed to make detailed project reports for prevention of floods.
Take for instance an expert team of a foreign company has been conducting study on river Jehlum how to prevent floods in Kashmir.
"The study has to work out modalities to conserve the water body and how to increase its carrying capacity. The experts have also to find the status of its shrinkage," an official said.
Similarly, the experts are also conducting a study on Wular Lake and several other water bodies over the years.
"The Pollution Control Board, Irrigation and Flood Control Department, Lakes and Waterways Development Authority, and Forest Department have been providing data to expert teams. They have to find out the capacity, usage, and discharge of water bodies. It will take few more months for experts to complete the study," the official said.
"This raises questions over the capability of engineers in Kashmir," a source in Irrigation and Flood Control Department said.
The Wular Lake, which is the largest flood absorption basin, has lost the water carrying capacity due to host of factors. Several surveys have found that gross human interference, deforestation, encroachments, chocking of water ways and reduction in capacity of wet lands due to heavy siltation posing an imminent threat of floods even by average downpour. In the backdrop of September 2014 floods, the Union Ministry of Water Resources in December that year asked the state government for framing of the detailed project report for the 80-km Dogripora flood channel to be constructed from Awantipora in south Kashmir to Wular Lake in north Kashmir's Bandipora district.
The project as per state government's preliminary estimates is expected to cost Rs 20,000 crores to carry the surplus flood discharge of Jhelum.
However, the authorities have failed to frame the DPR for the project during the last over four-years. A source in the Irrigation and Flood Control Department said that authorities on several times set up several committees for framing the DPR.
"These committees started work but all failed to make a comprehensive DRP resulting the project is lingering for last so many years," the source said.
The source said a team of foreign experts of the Spanish Company EPTISA have been working on studying the project.
"The team will submit report by next year then it will be decided how to make the DPR for the Dogripora flood project. Everything will be clear how to execute the project once the team submits the study report," he added.
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