Several villages under Pachim Telahi GP of Lakhimpur inundated
LAKHIMPUR: Amidst the adverse situation caused by COVID-19 pandemic and the four-phased lockdown initiated in order to combat the pandemic, flood havoc caused by North-Eastern Electric Power Corporation Limited (NEEPCO) due to the release of excess water from the catchment area of the Ranganadi Hydro Electric Plant (RHEP) has started in Lakhimpur before the onset of the rainy season of the running year.
The hydro-electric power generating company NEEPCO released the excess water from the Ranganadi Dam on Friday by opening its Dam Gate No. 5 by 3500 mm. As a result of it, the overflown water of Ranganadi, which was dry till Thursday, has inundated several villages under Pachim Telahi Gaon Panchayat of North Lakhimpur Revenue Circle at a time when the whole nation is busy to beat the coronavirus pandemic. The Gate concerned of RHEP dam was opened at 10.20 am and the excess water from the catchment area of the plant has been continuously released till the time of filing this report.
The flood caused by the Ranganadi River due to release of the excess water from the RHEP dam, which seems to be the first wave flood of the current year in Lakhimpur, has at present inundated Bongaon, Shantipur, Moluwal, Dowarpar, Kathalguri, Chanong Gaon under the said GP and affected the normal life of the residents.
Notably, the consecutive waves of flood caused by the Ranganadi River due to release of the excess water from the catchment area of NEEPCO operated RHEP have been ravaging these villages and other adjacent areas since 2017 penetrating through the unplugged guide dam of the Ranganadi right embankment. In that year the mentioned guide dam (ring dyke) was breached by the massive NEEPCO created flood. Since then the people of the larger area have to live a miserable life about which a detailed report was published in the July 21 issue of The Sentinel last year. No initiative was taken on time during the past years in order to plug the guide dam despite consecutive prayers of the local people. As a result of it, the people of more than ten villages under the Gaon Panchayat had to initiate protest programme at Dowarpara on the bank of the Ranganadi river in November last demanding the construction of a ring-dyke. The protesters demanded the State government and Lakhimpur District Administration to construct the ring dyke from the embankment of the river via Dowarpara and Bongaon to check consecutive waves of flood. During the demonstration of the protest, they even threatened to boycott the Panchayat poll unless the State government and the District Administration promised to construct the dyke.
However, though the Water Resources Department, North Lakhimpur Division took up a scheme of Rs. 1.50 crore to construct the guide dam under SDRF, it has remained in the file of the office concerned. The office could not complete the due processes on time to implement the scheme to relieve the flood victims. As per report found from the official source, the scheme is under the tender invitation process at present.