Union Government Fails to Address Assam’s Flood and Erosion Problem

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Centre yet not respond Assam’s plea in Natural Hazards

While Assam has faced flood and erosion problems for decades, the union government has not yet declared the flood and erosion problem of the state as a national problem.

Water Resources Minister of the Assam Rajib Lochan Pegu said on Tuesday in the state legislative assembly that, the Union government has not yet sent any response to the Assam government’s plea to declare the flood and erosion problem of the state as a national problem.

“The state government sent a proposal to the union government several times. In 2002, the state government sent a proposal to the union government. We had sent another proposal in 2005,” the Assam minister said.

In 2012, the state legislative assembly passed a resolution which was also sent to the Union Water Resources Ministry. But the Union government has not yet sent any response to the state government’s plea.

The minister said without assistance from the Union government, it is not possible to solve the major problem as the state continue to face in the coming decades.

Assam has lost 4.27 lakh hectares of land in flood and erosion so far since 1954, which is 7.40 per cent of the State’s plain areas.

Recently, the state government said nearly 3400 embankments of the state are in extremely pitiable condition.

A top source of Water Resources department of the state government said out of 4447 embankments in the state, 1000 embankments have been categorised as extremely vulnerable and 2400 as vulnerable.

“These embankments are in pitiable condition and it could be easily breached,” said the source of the state government’s Water Resources department.

As per data of the Assam Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA), a total of 109 people including 70 children died in flood and landslide in the state in 2012.

In last year’s flood, Kaziranga National Park (KNP) lost at least 560 wild animals including 14 one-horned rhinoceros.

According to the state government report, a total of 2534 villages have been wiped out so far due to erosion and 1.30 lakh families have become landless in the State due to flood and erosion.

The report said Assam lost properties worth Rs 36000 cr (based on 2004’s price level) so far due to flood and erosion.