Begin typing your search above and press return to search.

Majuli protection work to be over by 2014: Centre

By Spl CORRESPONDENT
  • Whatsapp
  • Telegram
  • Linkedin
  • Print
  • koo
  • Whatsapp
  • Telegram
  • Linkedin
  • Print
  • koo
  • Whatsapp
  • Telegram
  • Linkedin
  • Print
  • koo

NEW DELHI, Dec 10 � Faced with allegations of massive corruption in implementation of Protect Majuli Project, Minister of Water Resources Harish Rawat, while agreeing for a probe by a high-level committee, claimed that the land mass of the river island has increased by 18.05 sq km.

Rawat�s clarification came in the Rajya Sabha here this morning during a Question Hour discussion, when MPs belonging to various parties expressed concern over reports of anomalies in protection work and dangers posed by erosion to Majuli.

Several MPs, including former Union Minister for Water Resources Prof Saifuddin Soz, Sitaram Yechury, Kumar Deepak Das and Biren Baishya, underlined the need for the government to take measures to protect the river island, which is the seat of the Vaishnavite sect.

Replying to questions, Rawat said that the Centre has used satellite imagery to gauge the status of the river island after implementation of the Phase I of the Majuli Island Protection Scheme. In 2004, the land mass of the river island was 502.21 sq km. But post 2004, satellite imagery has shown that the land mass is 520.26 sq km. �We wanted to find out if the project work carried out was visible on the ground,� Rawat said.

�It is too early to conclude that the schemes have not yielded any results,� he said.

Stating that the Government of India is aware of the issues involved and that the Prime Minister has been keeping a close tab on the protection work, Rawat said that the three phases of the project are scheduled to be completed by 2014. The Phase I of the project, which is part of the Master Plan prepared in 1999, was completed in 2004-05.

While 45 per cent of the work of Phase II and III has been completed, the entire project work would be completed by 2014, he said.

About the allegations of corruption, the Minister for

Water Resources said that a committee under the Central Water Commission (CWC) has already been appointed and a Guwahati-based organisation has been commissioned to undertake a study and submit its report, he said adding the high-level team would be asked to visit Majuli again to monitor the work.

About the demand for restructuring of the Brahmaputra Board, the Minister said the post of the chairman of the Board, which was lying vacant, has been filled up, though several other vacancies still exist. �We will request the State Government to help in filling up the vacant posts,� he said.

�We are aware of the problems faced by Brahmaputra Board, and the Prime Minister is also sensitive to the problem of Assam floods. The Brahmaputra Board would be restructured and converted into a water resources authority, though the Arunachal Pradesh government has some reservations. �We are trying to set up a separate authority which would include Sikkim and West Bengal,� Rawat said.

The Minister said he was in agreement with the view that flood protection should be completed first. �I will again ask the CWC to revisit the project plan and send the report to all MPs of Assam,� he assured.

Assuring that he would visit the river island soon, Rawat said that 96 km of embankment has been constructed.

Stating that people and various organisations in Assam are concerned about the development work that is going on in Majuli, Kumar Deepak Das (AGP), referring to the corruption, said the situation was going to take a turn for the worse in the next three-four years.

�You have mentioned in the reply that the work of Phase-I has been completed by Brahmaputra Board in April, 2011, sending an amount of Rs 53.40 crore. But if we visit Majuli, it will reveal nothing. Not a single work has been done by the Brahmaputra Board, calling for restructuring of the river island.�

Participating in the discussion, Prof Saifuddin Soz, recalling his visit to Majuli, said that �several flagship programmes were in jeopardy because the attention was not being paid. Soil erosion is a question of life and death for the people of Majuli, and I don�t think the Ministry had done enough.�

Sitaram Yechury said there is no dearth of plans that have been made. Money is being sanctioned. But it is actually not finding its way into the actual protection of this island.

Participating in the discussion, Biren Baishya (AGP) said the problem was that the Centre was sanctioning funds and the Brahmaputra Board is working on the project, but the reality is that the Board is nothing but a white elephant, a corruption factory. �Money is being looted,� he alleged.

More in Entertainment
Next Story
Similar Posts
Majuli protection work to be over by 2014: Centre

NEW DELHI, Dec 10 � Faced with allegations of massive corruption in implementation of Protect Majuli Project, Minister of Water Resources Harish Rawat, while agreeing for a probe by a high-level committee, claimed that the land mass of the river island has increased by 18.05 sq km.

Rawat�s clarification came in the Rajya Sabha here this morning during a Question Hour discussion, when MPs belonging to various parties expressed concern over reports of anomalies in protection work and dangers posed by erosion to Majuli.

Several MPs, including former Union Minister for Water Resources Prof Saifuddin Soz, Sitaram Yechury, Kumar Deepak Das and Biren Baishya, underlined the need for the government to take measures to protect the river island, which is the seat of the Vaishnavite sect.

Replying to questions, Rawat said that the Centre has used satellite imagery to gauge the status of the river island after implementation of the Phase I of the Majuli Island Protection Scheme. In 2004, the land mass of the river island was 502.21 sq km. But post 2004, satellite imagery has shown that the land mass is 520.26 sq km. �We wanted to find out if the project work carried out was visible on the ground,� Rawat said.

�It is too early to conclude that the schemes have not yielded any results,� he said.

Stating that the Government of India is aware of the issues involved and that the Prime Minister has been keeping a close tab on the protection work, Rawat said that the three phases of the project are scheduled to be completed by 2014. The Phase I of the project, which is part of the Master Plan prepared in 1999, was completed in 2004-05.

While 45 per cent of the work of Phase II and III has been completed, the entire project work would be completed by 2014, he said.

About the allegations of corruption, the Minister for

Water Resources said that a committee under the Central Water Commission (CWC) has already been appointed and a Guwahati-based organisation has been commissioned to undertake a study and submit its report, he said adding the high-level team would be asked to visit Majuli again to monitor the work.

About the demand for restructuring of the Brahmaputra Board, the Minister said the post of the chairman of the Board, which was lying vacant, has been filled up, though several other vacancies still exist. �We will request the State Government to help in filling up the vacant posts,� he said.

�We are aware of the problems faced by Brahmaputra Board, and the Prime Minister is also sensitive to the problem of Assam floods. The Brahmaputra Board would be restructured and converted into a water resources authority, though the Arunachal Pradesh government has some reservations. �We are trying to set up a separate authority which would include Sikkim and West Bengal,� Rawat said.

The Minister said he was in agreement with the view that flood protection should be completed first. �I will again ask the CWC to revisit the project plan and send the report to all MPs of Assam,� he assured.

Assuring that he would visit the river island soon, Rawat said that 96 km of embankment has been constructed.

Stating that people and various organisations in Assam are concerned about the development work that is going on in Majuli, Kumar Deepak Das (AGP), referring to the corruption, said the situation was going to take a turn for the worse in the next three-four years.

�You have mentioned in the reply that the work of Phase-I has been completed by Brahmaputra Board in April, 2011, sending an amount of Rs 53.40 crore. But if we visit Majuli, it will reveal nothing. Not a single work has been done by the Brahmaputra Board, calling for restructuring of the river island.�

Participating in the discussion, Prof Saifuddin Soz, recalling his visit to Majuli, said that �several flagship programmes were in jeopardy because the attention was not being paid. Soil erosion is a question of life and death for the people of Majuli, and I don�t think the Ministry had done enough.�

Sitaram Yechury said there is no dearth of plans that have been made. Money is being sanctioned. But it is actually not finding its way into the actual protection of this island.

Participating in the discussion, Biren Baishya (AGP) said the problem was that the Centre was sanctioning funds and the Brahmaputra Board is working on the project, but the reality is that the Board is nothing but a white elephant, a corruption factory. �Money is being looted,� he alleged.

More in Entertainment
Similar Posts