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DVC should regulate water release to avert flood in WB: Mamata

Howrah (WB): West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today said her government will take up with Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC) issues like release of water and dredging in its reservoirs ahead of the monsoon to avert floods in South Bengal.
Expressing concern over floods in adjoining districts along the Damodar downstream every year, Banerjee said the DVC should regulate the discharge of water with prior intimation to the government to avoid sudden inundation of low-lying areas.
"We are writing a letter in this regard to the DVC authority urging it to regulate discharge of water and undertake proper dredging works in their reservoirs to ensure enhanced storage capacity, which could help prevent flood in the downstream adjacent areas," Banerjee said while interacting with the officials at an administrative meeting here.
"We don't like to see floods every year at Amta and Udainarayanpur in Howrah, Arambagh-Goghat-Khanakul in Hooghly and Ghatal in West Midnapore with the released water from the DVC and there should be a mechanism to avoid such a flood that disturbs people every year during monsoon," the chief minister said.
Apart from this, Banerjee asked officials to take all necessary measures in advance to avoid flood or flood-like situation anywhere in the state.
Banerjee also enquired about the progress of the Lower Damodar Basin project, having a budget of Rs 2,800 crore, which would mitigate the perennial problem when implemented, benefitting Howrah, Hooghly, Burdwan and Bankura districts.
"The project, when implemented, will help 1.7 lakh hectares of farm land. See, it can be expeditiously implemented in coordination with all concerned departments," she said.
On medical facilities, she said 27,000 beds had been added to different hospitals in the state in the past seven years.
"We are introducing new facilities in medical colleges and even 43 multi-speciality hospitals have come up during the period," she said.
She said the Howrah State General Hospital will be renovated and shifted to a more spacious place covering five acres.
"The Howrah State General Hospital can be shifted to the Howrah Correctional Home building. The Correctional Home building will then be shifted to the place where the Police Training School will come up," Banerjee said.
She said that with the Panchayat elections now over, the government is committed to fast track different projects.
Observing that there had been some incidents relating to law and order in certain pockets of Howrah district recently, Banerjee said she ask the police to step up monitoring.
Referring to the bus fare hike announced by the government yesterday, Banerjee said the soaring fuel prices are a concern for her government.
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