Union water resources minister Uma Bharti on Thursday said India would raise the issue of Saptakoshi river with Nepal, which causes flood in Bihar every year.
Addressing the 17th meeting of the Ganga Flood Control Council attended by ministers and officials of 11 states, Bharti said a solution was being found to the perennial flood problem in Bihar as the inter-linking of rivers plan was being contemplated to transform destructive face of rivers into beneficial ones.
She made the assurance to take up the matter with Nepal after Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar drew her attention that the Saptakoshi river project issue between India and Nepal was pending for long. The Union minister said the Ganga Flood Control Council was established in 1972 and its head office would remain here, while asking the participating ministers for suggestions on how to make it more effective.
In his speech, Kumar stressed the need for construction of multipurpose dams in Nepal which would help control floods in Bihar. He said Nepal would also benefit from multipurpose dams by generating hydro energy from them. “Due to rivers of Nepal, Bihar has to face tragedy of floods every year,” Kumar said.
On river Ganga, Kumar emphasised on cleanliness of its water as well regular water flow. “It is a matter of research as to how much water of river Ganga is reaching to Varanasi from its original point at Gangotri,” he said, drawing attention of the Union minister on the need for a policy on silt management of Ganga.
Ministers and officials from Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Uttarakhand, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Delhi participated in the meeting.