DIBRUGARH, Sep 1 - The police here today resorted to lathicharge when a section of the public tried to obstruct road communication by blocking the busy Thana Chariali junction in protest against the failure of the authorities to clear the clogged drains. This has happened even as the city in particular and the district in general are inching towards an emergency situation due to the unprecedented water-logging in the city and alarming flood and erosion in several parts of the district for the fourth day today,
The protesters, mostly members from the business community of the city, blocked the all important Thana Chariali junction, demanding cleaning of the city�s drains. Although a few ambulances were allowed to pass, several vehicles carrying patients as also police and civil personnel engaged in relief and rescue operations were stranded. Police immediately swung into action and baton caned some of them and all dispersed.
It needs to be mentioned here that most of the vehicles coming from both Moran and Tinsukia directions are presently plying through the Convoy road and KC Gogoi Path as the main (AT) road touching Marwaripatty, Phool Bagan, Graham Bazar, Naliapool and Seujpur have been completely submerged, since last Saturday. Although the water-logging is receding in some parts of the city, major areas continue to be plagued by the stagnant rain water.
Many in the city are today blaming the construction of the Bogibeel bridge approach highway as the culprit that is obstructing smooth flow of rainwater towards Sessa river, via the city�s main drain. It is alleged that the PWD engineers did not provide for sufficient number of culverts on the highway, causing severe water flow bottlenecks. The Dibrugarh-Dhamalgaon rail section too needs more culverts for smooth flow of storm water, said a retired engineer.
Fresh inundation in the district has brought altogether 101 villages under the affected list. As of today, more then 70, 000 people have been affected, of which 24, 485 are sheltered in 56 different relief camps. A total of 930.36 hectares of agricultural land and 3178.44 hectares of land in the district have remained submerged, as per the latest report from the district officials. Forest Minister Atuwa Munda accompanied by district officials visited some parts of the flood and erosion affected areas today in the district and took stock of the situation.
Meanwhile, the turbulent Brahmaputra and its tributaries have swelled in an alarming proportion. The rivers are flowing above the danger level and the administration has already sounded alert in the district. The surging Dehing river in Dehinghulla under Telpani Gaon Panchayat is almost breaching the dyke as several leakages were spotted today at the dyke. Although soil and sand filled gunny bags have been used to block the leakages, it has caused panic in the area, said Sanjay Sanga, a local social worker.