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Master plan set to make floods a thing of the past

Kolkata: A master plan has been prepared to carry out major work to ensure that flood-like situations become history for people residing in Hooghly and its surrounding areas.
The state Irrigation department has taken up a major project of strengthening embankments and improvement of other necessary infrastructure in Hooghly to avoid flood-like situations during monsoon.
The work will be carried out in two phases. In the first phase, work will be carried out in Arambagh and Goghat and the same task will be carried out in Khanakul and Pursura in the second phase.
A total amount of Rs 60 crore will be invested in the first phase, while the estimated expenditure for the second phase is around Rs 80 crore.
The main tasks that will be carried out, include strengthening of embankments, desiltation of river and dredging of canals. The state government has taken up the project to give respite to lakhs of residents of the area. Hundreds of people in the area face inconvenience during monsoon. So, the state government has decided to take up the project on an urgent basis and a master plan has been prepared for the same.
It may be mentioned that two master plans have been prepared to check flood in North Bengal. One master plan is for Cooch Behar, Jalpaiguri, Alipurduar and Darjeeling, while the other one is for Malda, North and South Dinajpur.
A consultant has been engaged to conduct survey to prepare the master plan for Malda, North and South Dinajpur. Strengthening of the existing embankments where found necessary and development of the other infrastructure besides upgrading the existing 32 sluice gates in North Bengal will be carried out.
In 2017, flood led to massive destruction and claimed several lives in both North and South Bengal. The flood led to a loss of Rs 413.10 crore as embankments at 1,411 places in 19 districts were damaged. Repairing work was undertaken.
Earlier, the Mamata Banerjee government had prepared master plans for South Bengal districts and its implementation has helped in checking flood-like situation in Birbhum, Murshidabad, East and West Midnapore.
The state Irrigation department has also engaged all its officials to carry out a proper assessment and subsequently, the needed tasks ahead of monsoon every year. The department takes all sorts of measures to ensure that people do not face flood-like situations.

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