Centre should immediately 'reform' DVC, says Mamata
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday demanded that the Centre immediately "reform" DVC, which released water from its different barrages leading to the flood-like situation in the rain-battered state.
"DVC barrages are quite old. They are not cleaned or dredged from time to time which has resulted in sedimentation ... If dredging had been done then another two lakh cusec of water could have been stored there.
"So whenever it is raining in Jharkhand, it is West Bengal which is suffering every year. So just like I do not want others to suffer, we should also not suffer. I think the Centre must carry out an immediate reform at the DVC," Banerjee said at Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport on her return from New Delhi.
The problem that West Bengal faces is that the water released by the DVC barrages every year when it rains heavily in Jharkhand create a flood-like situation in the state, she said.
"Since 2012 we have raised the issue of water release by DVC. But no action has been taken. Even today it (DVC) has released an additional one lakh cusec of water. Because of that three districts Howrah, Hooghly and West Midnapore (in West Bengal) are facing a flood-like situation," the chief minister said.
"If dredging was done at Farakka then Bihar would not have faced any problem. No dredging is done in Ganga, Kolkata Port," she added.
Though some of the districts witnessed less rain since Tuesday, the situation worsened after the DVC started releasing water from its reservoirs as the water level in the catchment areas had risen dangerously.
Meanwhile, DVC has issued a red alert on Wednesday warning of a flood- like situation in some parts of Bengal. DVC has released 2,16,350 cusec water from Panchet, while the Jharkhand government released an additional 1,51,030 cusec water from Galodi.
The situation in Hooghly, Howrah, Birbhum, Bankura, East and West Midnapore may worsen further on Thursday with the release of more water from the DVC barrages. On Wednesday, Murshidabad received 87 mm rainfall, Bankura 82.8 mm, Maithon 81.6 mm and Asansol 82.4 mm. According to the weather office, the low-pressure trough has moved towards Jharkhand bringing more rain there.
Khanakul, Arambag along in Hooghly was inundated on Wednesday after embankments along the Dwarkeswar river got damaged. The National Disaster Response Force has been called in to combat the situation in Hooghly. A foot bridge connecting the Satighat bridge on Gandheswari river in Bankura was washed away, as a result, many villages were cut off from Bankura town.
The situation in East Midnapore is no different with the people in Panskura the worst hit, while in West Midnapore people in Ghatal, Chandrakona and Keshpur several villagers and moved to safer areas.