GUWAHATI, Feb 13 � Work to protect the Rohmaria area in Dibrugarh district from Brahmaputra erosion is on since January 4 last. The administrative approval for the scheme has been accorded for Rs 52.36 crore against the originally proposed Rs 59.9129 crore. A proposal for providing permanent protection to the area with nine spurs, prepared at an estimated cost of Rs 344 crore, is under study at the Central Water Commission (CWC), said sources in the State�s Water Resources Department (WRD).
The Rs 52. 36-crore project of urgent work includes the components of bank protection by geo bag, porcupine screen to accelerate siltation in the bank side and dredging for digging a deep diversion channel of the river. It is expected to be completed during this lean season.
Earlier, a scheme was prepared for urgent measures to protect Rohmaria area at an estimated cost of Rs 9 crore with a time limit of one month during the month of June last year as per the suggestion of a five�member team headed by Member River Management (RM) of the Central Water Commission (CWC). The team was constituted as per the wishes of the water resources experts of the State. However, the State WRD could not undertake this project.
The State Government was asked by the five-member team to modify its Rs 59.9129-rore scheme of immediate measures for protection of Rohmaria area, to provide 4-metre wide boulder-filled wire crates all along severe erosion-prone bank and 10-metre to 16-metre-long and 4-metre wide studs at 100 metre centre-to-centre in place of geo-bags to ensure early action.
However, the team suggested incorporation of the above changes after intimating the CWC and the Ministry of Water Resources (MoWR) and proposal for revision in cost might be submitted subsequently after detailed analysis.
It was also agreed that the scheme of nine spurs proposed in the long-term-measure-scheme with an estimated value of Rs 344 crore for permanent protection of Rohmaria area, might be taken up for further examination by the Central Water and Power Research Station (CWPRS), Pune.
For the purpose, execution of immediate and urgent measures and their efficacy need to be observed. With the changes in the morphology of the Brahmaputra in the last 10 to 15 years, CWPRS, Pune needs to study the Rs 344-crore proposal of spurs afresh, said the team.
It needs mention here that at Rohmaria, the southern channel of the Brahmaputra has been maintaining a tendency to concave and migrate southward, which activates high bank erosion. The bank erosion in this area is active for a length of eight kilometres.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had announced Central assistance to tackle the erosion problem of Rohmaria area in his January, 2006 economic package for Assam. The Brahmaputra Board has by this time executed three phases of anti-erosion work in the upper Rohmaria area, at an estimated cost of around Rs 24.16 crore. The third phase of the work was completed by March 2008.
Rest of the work is scheduled to be taken up under phase-IV for an estimated cost of Rs 53.29 crore and the detailed project report for the work is learnt to have been technically cleared by the CWC with a provision to undertake it within an amount of Rs 23 crore, sources said.