GUWAHATI, Sept 22 � The State Cabinet today decided to constitute a Flood and Erosion Management Commission to advise the Government to chalk out detailed plans to mitigate floods. The Cabinet also decided to effect hike in the fares of public transport.
Official sources said that the Cabinet, in its meeting chaired by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, observed that flood and erosion by the rivers Brahmaputra and Barak and their tributaries are causing havoc every year, causing extensive damage to human habitation and crops. The schemes taken to mitigate flood and erosion so far are not adequate to fully deal with the problem and there is need for a holistic study for permanent solution of the problems.
The Cabinet decided that the Commission would be headed by Dr NK Choudhury, former Vice-Chancellor of the Gauhati University. The other members of the Commission would be Dr Arup Sarma and Dr Anup Gogoi of the IIT, Guwahati, Dr Dulal Goswami, a retired professor of the Gauhati University, Dr JN Sarma, retired professor of Dibrugarh University, Dr Nayan Sarma of IIT, Roorkee, AK Mitra, former secretary of the Water Resources Department, Director of the Assam Science Technology and Environment Council, Chief Engineer of the Brahmaputra Board, Regional Director of the Inland Waterways Authority of India and the CEO of the AIFRERMA. The secretary of the State Water Resources Department will be the member secretary of the Commission, while, the Additional Chief Secretary in charge of the Department will be a special invitee.
Official sources said that the chairman of the Commission has been given the authority to co-opt two experts in the Commission in consultation with the other members.
Meanwhile, the State Cabinet today decided to increase the fares of the public transport vehicles. However, official sources said that the rates would be finalized by the Transport Department in consultation with the transporters' associations, official sources said.
The State Cabinet also decided to increase the excise duty on liquor.