DOOMDOOMA, July 30 - Unabated erosion by the Kundil River has posed a very serious threat to the very existence of National Highway-37 as a portion of the surface communication network is about to be breached at 8th Mile in Sadiya.
National Highway-37, it may be mentioned, is the main surface communication link to Sadiya and two districts of Arunachal Pradesh.
Heeding the advice of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Minister of State for Labour and Tea Tribes Welfare Sanjay Kishan and Sadiya MLA Bolin Chetia made an on the spot survey of the erosion-affected site recently. Later, talking to the mediapersons, Sanjay Kishan said that excavators would be engaged to dredge the river bed for diversion of the river for a month. He further announced that he would bear the entire expense of the dredging work.
Local MLA Bolin Chetia informed that Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had released an amount of Rs 87 lakh to undertake immediate restoration work at the site on an emergency basis.
Meanwhile, a delegation of Tinsukia-Dibrugarh District Flood and Erosion Resistance Struggle Forum (TDDF and ERSF) led by its president Binod Kedia visited the erosion-affected Hatighuli area of west Saikhowa in Tinsukia district .
The delegation expressed serious concern after witnessing the heavy erosion caused by the Brahmaputra from Phelai to Naokata and urged the district administration as well as state Water Resource Department to take immediate measures to check the erosion. In a press statement, the TDDF and ERSF president Binod Kedia and secretary Prakash Rai stated that if some immediate measures were not taken to check the erosion, the gravity of the problem would become more serious in the days to come.
Later, the delegation held a meeting with the local people of Phelai No. 2 Kopahtoli, Naokata and Kopahtoli at the erosion-affected site of Phelai.
In the meeting, the engineer of the state Water Resources Department Prabhat Boro and Sadiya MLA Bolin Chetia�s representative Churamoni Sharma were also present.
At the beginning of the meeting, the vice president of the Forum Bhabesh Upadhyaya explained how the people of these areas had been battling with floods and erosion since long. The president of the Forum Binod Kedia said that the Water Resources Department had prepared a scheme worth Rs 12.5 crores to check erosion in the area and the scheme had been sent to the government for necessary approval. Kedia urged the government to expedite approval of the scheme so that anti-erosion work could be started in the coming winter. The delegation also visited the erosion-hit Bisanimukh and 8th Mile of Sadiya. Erosion by the Kundil river has taken a serious turn in these two places. The river has already eroded a portion of the approach road to Sudhakantha Dr Bhupen Hazarika Setu.