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Meet Hayer instructs to speed up the work of plugging in Rivers


Chandigarh: The Water Resources Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer on Thursday held a review meeting with the officials of the department to take stock of the flood situation in several districts due to the excess water in the rivers of the state due to record breaking rains in Punjab and hilly areas and directed to speed up the ongoing rescue and relief work.

Meet Hayer said that Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann is keeping a close eye on the flood situation and he is constantly taking reports from the department. On the instructions of the Chief Minister, the department is monitoring the water situation in dams, rivers, and canals and the work of filling the gap is being done fast. During the meeting, Principal Secretary Water Resources Krishan Kumar presented a report on the current situation and detailed the ongoing works.

The Water Resources Minister said that the reason for the situation in many districts of Punjab is due to the heavy rains that fell on July 9 and 10.

Divulging the details, he said that in normal times in Ropar, there is a total average of 288 mm of rain in the month of July, but this time 377 mm of rain fell in just two days. Similarly, in the month of July, the total average rainfall in Mohali was 208.6 and this time 266 mm was received in two days. If we talk about the whole of Punjab, the state used to receive 161.4 mm of rain in the month of July and this time 83.4 mm of rain was received in two days. The rains in Himachal Pradesh are also the main reason behind the excess water in the rivers of Punjab. Himachal Pradesh receives an average of 255.9 mm of rainfall in the month of July, while 195.8 mm of rain fell in two days on July 9 and 10.

Meet Hayer further said that the department is monitoring the condition of all dams, rivers and canals every hour. He said that according to this morning's report, the water level in Bhakra Dam is 1648.12 feet while the capacity is 1680 feet. The water level in Pong Dam is 1374 feet while the capacity is 1390 feet and the water level in Ranjit Sagar Dam is 1721.4 feet while the capacity is 1731.99 feet.

Giving information about the water level in the three dams in the last 11 days due to excessive rain and cloud bursts in the hilly areas, he said that from July 9 to July 20, the water level in Bhakra Dam has increased by 41.46 feet, in Pong Dam by 35.13 feet and in Ranjit Sagar Dam by 33.9 feet. He also clarified that during this season the flood gates were not opened even once from Bhakra Dam. A maximum of 35000 cusecs of water is released through the turbines which is required and essential for power generation.

The Minister said that during the meeting, the incidents of breaching in the rivers at different places in the state were reviewed and instructions were given that the work of filling the breaching should be done on a war footing. He said that many places have been plugged and in some places only after the water recedes, the work of plughing the breaches can be started.

Meet Hayer said that according to the initial estimate, the department suffered a loss of Rs. 90 crore due to floods. This damage has happened to canals and drains.

Chief Engineer (Canals) NK Jain and Chief Engineer (Drainage) Hardeep Singh Mahindiratta were also present in the meeting.

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