Jharkhand: 42 Yrs Under Construction, Canal Collapses Just 24 Hrs After Opening; 4 Engineers Suspended
In just 24 hours after the inauguration of Jharkhand’s irrigation project which was under construction from last 42 years, collapsed, flooding many nearby villages.
Four engineers have been suspended till now. The initial report submitted has said that the incident was caused due to “closure of escape regulator due to which the pressure of water increased and the weaker part of the canal washed away”.
According to the report, a 28-30 meter area of the canal was damaged and crops spread over 10-15 acres of land got submerged.
The Konar river irrigation project, inaugurated by the Chief Minister Raghubar Das, aimed at helping 85 villages by providing water for irrigation. The 2,176 crore project was built to provide 1,700 cusecs water daily for the irrigation purpose in 62,895 hectares of land.
However, the damage led to collapse, thereby flooding fields of 35 villages in the Bagodar block of nearby Giridh district.
The administration had initially suspected rats to be the reason for this situation. While speaking to The Times of India, Arun Kumar Singh, Additional Chief Secretary of the Water Resources Department, had then said that rat holes in the ‘non-concrete’ portion of the canal may have caused the damage.
The chief engineer of the Water Resources Department, Hazaribagh was asked to file a report within 24 hours of the mishap.
Although the repair has started now, the very project which was seen as the development for many villages has now created trouble in the lives of villagers.
The opposition leaders attacked the state government. Congress’s Alok Dubey said, “The BJP government takes credit for other’s work or inaugurates half-baked project like Konar.”
Project Which Had Been Going On For 42 Yrs
The initial brick of the project was kept in the year 1978 by the then Governor of undivided Bihar Jaggananth Kaushal who proposed this project. The project got delayed because of many reasons and differences among the successive governments.
Later in 2003, the foundation stone for the project was laid by Chief Minister Arjun Munda again, but the work proceeded at an extremely slow rate. In 2012, once again tender was floated for the project, which was bagged by a Mumbai-based company.