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Sonowal plea for road-cum-embankments

Sonowal sought support from the Jal Shakti ministry for inclusion of erosion in the admissible list of calamities

By Our Special Correspondent in Guwahati

  • Published 10.11.19, 12:05 AM
  • Updated 10.11.19, 12:05 AM
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal attends the review meeting of the Brahmaputra Board in Guwahati on Saturday
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal attends the review meeting of the Brahmaputra Board in Guwahati on Saturday UB Photos

Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal has requested the Union Jal Shakti ministry to take steps for converting old embankments into “road-cum-embankments”.

Speaking at the 10th meeting of the high-powered review board of the Brahmaputra Board here on Saturday, Sonowal said the state government had constructed nearly 4,474km of embankments since 1954 but most of them had become vulnerable because of expiry of the design period. He requested the ministry to take steps for converting the old embankments into road-cum-embankments.

“Erosion is also systematically destroying the chain of embankments which provide relief during annual floods and there is an urgent need to look into the matter for a permanent solution to protect the state from further erosion,” he said

The meeting was chaired by Jal Shakti minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and minister of state Rattan Lal Kataria. It was attended by ministers and chief secretaries of northeastern states.

Sonowal sought support from the Jal Shakti ministry for inclusion of erosion in the admissible list of calamities for assistance under the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF).

He said the matter had already been taken up with the home ministry. Shekhawat said the Brahmaputra Board had to work with a scientific approach for successful implementation of projects in the region. “If the issue of water resources in the region is utilised properly then it can play a vital role in transforming the life of people and the economy of the entire northeastern region,” he added.

According to him, the Brahmaputra Board needs to be strengthened to meet the needs and challenges of the northeastern states. He urged the officials to work like facilitators. The secretary, ministry of water resources and river development, U.P. Singh, laid emphasis on completing all the pending projects with timely release of funds.

Views from ministers of the different states of the region were taken and the issues related to water resources of those states were discussed in the meeting.

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