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Can a floodwall serve the purpose of an embankment?

Acute scarcity of land in West Guwahati

Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, April 6: Is land as scarce as hen’s teeth in the Khajan area in West Guwahati LAC? The scarcity of land in the area is so acute that the State Water Resource Department cannot even erect an embankment along the Khajan channel to prevent the river from gobbling up its banks.
This is the picture on ‘availability of land’ in the area as portrayed by the revelations made by State Water Resources Minister Keshab Mahanta. The minister had to reveal all these while replying to a question from AGP MLA Ramendra rayan Kalita on the floor of the Assembly.
The need is an embankment to prevent erosion by the Khajan river along its banks. However, the department is making do with the erection of a flood wall along the river. According to the revelations made by the minister, the floodwall is to prevent waters from the river to flood its catchment areas, not to prevent erosion. “No work has been done along the Khajan river to prevent erosion. Since there’s no sufficient land for the construction of an embankment there, we’re erecting a floodwall so that during the monsoon water from the river cannot overflow its banks,” the minister informed the House.
The revelations made by the minister have further made it known that around 70 per cent work of the floodwall along the Khajan river is over.
The phase I of the floodwall, according to the minister, is construction of a wall in each bank of the river from the tiol Highway up to Khamukh sluice gate with an estimated cost of Rs 4 crore. The work also includes raising the interl roads along both banks of the river. This phase of the wall, according to the minister, is over.  The phase II work of the same flood wall with an estimated cost of Rs 3.50 crore, according to information given by the minister in the Assembly, is also over. With the completion of these two phases of the project, according to the information given by the minister, 70 per cent work has been over.
For the completion of the remaining 30 per cent work of the floodwall in fiscal 2018-19, the department is estimating the expenditure for its submission to the State Fince Department for approval.  The department is also estimating the fincial requirement for the protection of Sadilapur and Garigaon areas from erosion of the Brahmaputra for its submission to the forthcoming technical advisory committee meeting.

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Ankur Kalita