Five days on, 30-ft Ghaggar breach still remains to be plugged
After their continuous efforts for five days, the army, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and local residents plugged a major part of over 150-ft breach in the Ghaggar river at Phulad village in the district till Monday, though its 30-ft stretch still remained to be covered.
Meanwhile, the flood water damaged over two dozen houses in Moonak town and paddy crop of five villages along the banks of the river.
The water level of the river came down to 745.3 ft against Sunday’s 749.1 ft. The danger mark of the river is 750 ft.
“The army, the NDRF and locals have been working for the past five days and they have plugged a major part of the breach. Only 30-ft breach remains to be plugged. As the water current is high near the breach, the process is taking time. The entire breach will hopefully be plugged on Tuesday,” said deputy commissioner Ghanshyam Thori.
The flood water has damaged the paddy crops of five villages — Surjan Bhaini, Salemgarh, Makrod Sahib, Bhundar Bhaini and Phulad. It also damaged the walls and floor of over two dozen houses at Ravidas Colony of Moonak Town.
“The colony has been surrounded by flood water and the walls on the rear side have submerged under 5 to 8 ft water. The walls of many houses have collapsed and the floor has cracked. Cracks have also appeared on the walls of my newly built house. We built it after taking loan, but the flood water has ruined us,” said Pritam Singh of Moonak.
Farmers under the banner of Bharti Kisan Union (BKU-Ugrahan) held a protest outside the deputy commissioner’s office and submitted a memorandum demanding adequate compensation.
“The flood is the proof of state government’s mismanagement. The government should give adequate compensation to farmers,” said Amrik Singh, district chief, BKU (Ugrahan).
Meanwhile, special chief secretary-cum-finance commissioner, revenue, Karanbir Singh Sidhu visited Phulad village to review the ongoing work of plugging the breach in the Ghaggar.
Speaking to the villagers at Phulad, Sidhu assured them that once the water level in the fields recedes, a special girdawari will be initiated to assess the crop loss and suitable compensation will be given to farmers.
Meanwhile, Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh conducted an aerial survey of the flood-affected areas of Sangrur and Patiala districts on Tuesday.
Parts of the two districts have been flooded due to breaches in the Ghaggar river following heavy rains over the past few days.