GORESWAR, Sept 26 - The entire flood-affected areas comprising villagers like Sonmahari, Gurmow, Harijora, Maregaon, Halongbari, Balabari, Barpathar, Nizkochula, Chenigaon, Barigaon, Betagaon etc., in Tamulpur subdivision in Baksa district are now covered by the blooming kohuaban (reed forest). The croplands measuring about 10,000 hectares are covered by the beautiful kohua flower in the croplands instead of crop, displaying a beauty that can inspire poetry.
However, the poor farmers do not to enjoy the scenic beauty of the blooming kohua which they feel is growing on the graves of their shattered dreams. Since 1996, floods have visited these villagers without fail each year damaging almost everything they grow.
They have almost lost all means of their livelihood like fishery, piggery, betelnut and coconut cultivation and crops to the perennial floods. The surging flood waters of the Puthimari river have even not left the houses of these villagers untouched thereby tossing their lives upside-down.
Successive waves of siltation measuring four to six feet, after each wave of floods in the few years, due to the breached eastern embankment of the Puthimari river at Barpathar, Halongbari, Bagaribari, Sonmahari, Maregaon villages have destroyed cropland in scores of villages in Tamulpur and Rangiya LACs.
Kohuaban are growing stronger every year as they are now posing a new threat. The reeds coupled with siltation are causing a great loss to vegetables as well as paddy thereby impoverishing the poor farmers further. The villagers, deeply mired in poverty while talking to this correspondent, have now pinned all their hopes on the Government.
Moreover, the betelnut and coconut trees of the villages are gradually perishing due to the siltation caused by the consecutive floods since 1993. What all these have done is to reduce the farmers to work as daily wage labourers.