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Jharnadhara project to mitigate water woes in hills

Kolkata: The Bengal government is planning to launch "Jharnadhara Water Project" in North Bengal, to mitigate water crisis in the hills.
The North Bengal Development department has been chalking out elaborate plans to address the water crisis issue that the hill areas have been facing for a long time. Once the project gets started, the hills and various other parts of North Bengal will benefit immensely from the project.
According to an official of the North Bengal Development department, the project is at the initial level of planning. It would be adopted after a thorough survey is conducted in this regard. Study would be done on how fountain water could be treated in plants to produce drinking water on a large scale.
The hill areas have been facing an acute crisis of water for a long time. After carrying out a thorough study, a detailed project report would be prepared in this regard, on how to implement the project and how it would cost the government. The viability of the project will also be looked into.
It may be mentioned here that the department has also chalked out a detailed plan to augment fish production in North Bengal, where pisciculture could not be done on a large scale. The state Fisheries department is also procuring the most advanced satellite images, through which the department officials will be able to assess the condition of various waterbodies in the hills and also across the state.
Fishlings have been put into different ponds across North Bengal and also in rivers like Teesta, Torsha, Kalijani, Karla, Jaldhaka, Sankosh and others. Awareness campaigns have been started in local areas where tea gardens exist, so that people learn to avoid using the river water to clean spray machines after using them for pest control purposes.
It has been learnt that around 6,000 tonnes of fish is currently procured in Jalpaiguri and Alipurduar districts annually.
A senior official of the North Bengal Development department said that fish procurement in North Bengal has comparatively been low and hence, several steps have been taken to boost pisciculture there. They have been distributing free food for feeding small fishes. Fish farmers are being provided training on how to apply scientific methods to cultivate fish.

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