Jammu and Kashmir Government has sought the technical and financial support of the Union Water Resources Ministry in the implementation of flood management programme around river Jhelum and Tawi in the State.
The issue was discussed by the Chief Minister, Ms Mehbooba Mufti with Mr Shashi Shekhar, Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, Government of India, who called on the former here this afternoon.
The Chief Minister called for immediate implementation of the flood management programme around river Jhelum comprising Phase-I costing Rs 399 crore and Phase-II costing Rs 1178 crore (totaling Rs 1577 crore) which have been sanctioned under the Rs 80000 crore Prime Minister’s Development Plan for J&K.
The Chief Minister was informed by the Union Secretary that around Rs 20 crore have already been released to the State under Phase-I of the flood management programme and more funds would be released as soon as the utilization certificates are sent to the Union Ministry.
The Chief Minister said to expedite the flood management project, the State Government would also seek the help of Union Shipping Ministry and the Dredging Corporation of India to take up the dredging of the rivers and lakes especially the Wullar lake on a massive scale.
The Chief Minister was informed that with the execution of the Phase-I and Phase-II of the flood management programme, the carrying capacity of river Jhelum will go up from the existing 40000 cusecs to 60000 cusecs and it would to a large extent prevent the flood threat to Kashmir.
The Chief Minister also sought the intervention of the Union Water Resources Ministry by way expertise to place a robust infrastructure setup in place for flood management around Jhelum, Tawi, Chenab and small rivers and nallahs including Veshow, Rambiara, Bringi and Romshu in south Kashmir which cause massive devastation in these areas during floods.
The Chief Minister sought the Union Secretary’s intervention in expediting the sanctioning of Rs 290 crore flood management project for river Tawi which has been already submitted by the State Government to the Central Water commission. She said the other projects under flood management program which need to be expedited for funding by the Union Ministry include Rs 75 crore project for flood management on Ujh river in district kathua, Rs 76 crore project for flood protection works on Sahar Khad and its tributaries in district Kathua, Rs 51 crore flood protection works from Shahi Khul, Surankote to Kalai Bridge in district Poonch, Rs 64 crore works from Kalai bridge to Sher-e-Kashmir bridge in district Poonch and Rs 50 crore for protection works on Basantar river in district Samba.
The Chief Minister also sought central funding for Ans canal project in district Rajouri and starting inland transport in river Jhelum.
The Union secretary asked the State government to come up with a comprehensive plan of action involving rivers and lakes for developing an integrated flood management system for the State to help sustain floods of very high magnitude. He assured full support of the Central Government in the formulation and implementation of the projects.
He said a team of experts from the Union Ministry of Water Resources will be arriving in Jammu and Kashmir shortly to help the state Government in the preparation of detailed project report (DPR) for the implementation of flood management programme.
Principal Secretary to Chief Minister, Mr Naveen Kumar Choudhary and Commissioner Secretary, PHE, Irrigation and Flood Control Department, Mr Sanjeev Verma was also present at the meeting.