1 dead, 10 injured after clash over water in rain-deficient Odisha
Even as Odisha stares at a drought with more than half of the state blocks witnessing deficient rainfall, a clash broke out on Sunday between people of two villages in Cuttack district over farmland irrigation that left a person dead and 10 others injured.
Police officials said Sridhar Samal, 44, of Sagar village in Cuttack district was killed by an arrow over ongoing dispute in sharing of water from a pond.
In the ensuing clash between people of the two villages, 10 people were left injured, a few of them severely, Inspector general of police (central range) Soumendra Priyadarshi said.
For long there was a conflict between the people over the water of Chamundapali pond during scarcity. In view of the drought-like situation due to deficient rainfall this monsoon, the embankment of the pond was cut last month to ensure water supply to farmlands of Panchagochhia village at the behest of local tehsildar.
“However this morning, the people of Sagar village closed the embankment breach that stopped water supply to Panchagochhia village. This led to a clash between them,” said Priyadarshi. Of the 10 injured, two are said to be serious.
Police said 2 platoons of forces have been deployed in the area.
With rains deserting the coastal state, Odisha has been looking at a looming drought with 167 of the 314 blocks of the state witnessing rainfall deficiency of anything between 20 and 69 per cent.
Between June 1 and July 31 the state received 457.7 mm of rainfall against the normal rainfall of 556.4 mm, a deficit of 17.7%. The situation has turned precarious with water level in the large and medium reservoirs only 15.66 percentage of the average live storage capacity which is inadequate for irrigation purposes.