Floods in Bihar Destroyed 7.54 Lakh Hectares of Agricultural Land This Yr – The Wire

Patna: Yearly, floods wreak havoc in Bihar, inflicting in depth losses and deaths. This 12 months, 7.54 lakh hectares of agricultural land has been destroyed. In 2018, the identical determine was solely zero.34 lakh hectares, and even final 12 months was 2.61 lakh hectares. The truth is, since independence, floods in Bihar have affected 2.24 million hectares of agricultural land in all, and precipitated losses value Rs 768.38 crore between 1953 and 2017.

These numbers had been obtained from solutions supplied by the Centre in response to questions posed by MPs within the Lok Sabha between 2019 and 2020.

The districts most affected by the floods this 12 months had been Sitamarhi, Darbhanga, Muzaffarpur, East Champaran, Samastipur and Saran. They’d been dealing with flood-threats as a result of surging water ranges within the Gandak, Boorhi Gandak, Bagmati, Lakhandei rivers, in addition to the Adhwara group of rivers. The stress from floods additionally destroyed half a dozen embankments alongside the Gandak and Boorhi Gandak rivers.

The annual floods usually have an effect on giant swathes of north Bihar, by which greater than three dozen rivers. Most of them originated in Nepal.

Since 1947, the federal government has laid plenty of emphasis on constructing embankments to guard in opposition to floods. However right now, the whole size of embankments on either side of main rivers exceeds the size of these rivers within the state. In line with information from the Water Sources Division, a complete of three,790 km of embankment have up to now been constructed on 13 rivers in Bihar – Ganga, Kosi-Adhwara, Boorhi Gandak, Kiul Harohar, Punpun, Mahananda, Son, Bagmati, Kamla Balan, Gandak, Ghaghara and Chandan. In line with a report of the Second Bihar State Irrigation Fee, 350 km of embankments had been constructed within the final three many years.

Between 2005 and 2010, round 70 km of embankments got here up alongside the Bagmati, Gandak and Kosi rivers. And between 2010 and 2012, 67 km of embankments had been erected alongside the Bagmati, Bhutahi Balan and Kamla rivers prolonged over 67 kilometres, adopted by a further 50 km alongside the Bagmati, Kamla, Adhwara Chandan, plus another rivers.

Additionally learn: Bihar: Kosi Venture’s Promise of Flood-Free Prosperity Stays a Distant Dream

Furthermore, there are additionally 374 Zamindari and Maharaji Dams in Bihar, constructed by landlords and villagers to guard villages in opposition to floods. In 2013, the State Minor Dam Coverage was formulated, underneath which the Water Sources Division was afforded the possession in addition to entrusted with the duty of sustaining these dams (since categorised as minor dams).

Responding to a query posed by MP Karti P. Chidambaram on September 20, 2020, the Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar described crop areas affected by floods, landslides and cloudbursts within the final three years (2018 to 2020). He claimed 17.09 lakh hectares of agricultural space had been broken in 28 states in 2018. Nevertheless, this information didn’t embody the flood-affected elements of Bihar. In 2019, round 11.43 million hectares of crop land was affected throughout the nation – which included 2.6 million hectares in Bihar.

Tomar additionally stated round 7.5 lakh hectares cultivation space had been destroyed in Bihar this 12 months.

On September 17, 2020, in response to a query from MP Ashok Kumar Rawat in regards to the injury brought on by floods, Minister of State for Jal Shakti and Social Justice and Empowerment Rattan Lal Kataria stated eight.823 million in Bihar had been affected by floods in 2016 and four.1 lakh hectares of crop-land, value Rs 443.53 crore, was broken. Over 16,700 homes additionally incurred damages, value Rs 44.26 crore, whereas 254 folks and 246 livestock died. The lack of public amenities amounted to Rs 40.97 crore. The full injury was estimated to be value Rs 528.76 crore.

In 2017, the floods reportedly affected 1.71 crore folks in Bihar and wreaked havoc over some 82,000 hectares. The waters additionally broken 1.18 lakh homes and killed 514 folks and 373 livestock. The full estimate of the injury is just not obtainable for the 12 months, nonetheless.

Flood-affected villagers use momentary rafts as they navigate by the floodwaters of river Ganges and transfer to safer grounds, after heavy rains at Patna district in Bihar August 29, 2013. Photograph: Reuters/Krishna Murari Kishan/Recordsdata

In 2018, the lack of crops, homes and public amenities amounted to Rs 5.56 crore. An space of ​​34,000 hectares, with a inhabitants of zero.15 million, was affected. A thousand hectares of agricultural land value Rs 5.13 crore was ruined; 1,074 homes had been broken. However just one fatality was reported that 12 months. The lack of public facilities was additionally minimal. In line with authorities information, the loss was estimated to be value Rs 1 lakh.

Answering an unstarred query posed by MPs Vinayak Bhaurao Raut, Shrirang Appa Barne, Hemant Patil and D.N.V. Senthilkumar on November 19, 2019, Minister of State for Dwelling Affairs Nityanand Rai stated that floods, landslides and hydrological hazards had contributed to the deaths of 989 folks and 9,804 livestock in eight states in 2019. A complete of 494,284 homes and 54.eight lakh hectares of agricultural space had been broken. The floods in Bihar particularly killed 113 folks and 80 cattle, whereas damaging 45,355 homes and a couple of.61 lakh hectares of cultivated space.

In response to a query by MP Rampreet Mandal on June 27, 2019, Kataria had stated that Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal are recurrently affected by floods in rivers originating from Nepal.

The Central Water Fee has been compiling particulars of damages brought on by floods since 1953. And from 1953 to 2017, Kataria stated, Bihar has suffered damages amounting in all to Rs 2,310.65 crore. As well as, an space of ​​42.6 lakh hectares and a few 30 million folks had been additionally affected. Somewhat over 22 lakh hectares of agricultural space, value Rs 768.38 crore, was broken. In the identical 64-year interval, 1.four million homes value Rs 831.45 crore had been destroyed, and 10,105 animals and 1,287 folks killed. Public amenities value Rs 1,zero35 crore had been additionally broken.

Watch: ‘Bihar Floods a Political Catastrophe Not a Pure One’

On July 11, 2019, Katari reportedly claimed whereas answering a query posed by MP Badruddin Ajmal that the Nationwide Flood Fee had estimated the opportunity of flooding over a complete space of 40 million hectares throughout the nation.

He stated that in response to the Working Group on Flood Administration and Area Particular Points for the XII Plan, the utmost flood affected space between 1953 and 2010 was four crore hectares of which the most important chunk – about 50 lakh hectares – lies in Bihar.

He claimed that the Ganga Flood Management Fee recognized 39 districts throughout the nation as flood-prone areas in 2006, together with 15 districts of Bihar: Seohar (45.four%), Sitamarhi (39.63%), Darbhanga (38.69%), Gopalgunj (36.49%), Saharsa (35.38%), Muzaffarpur (30.61%), Supaul (22.61%), Madhubani (20.53%), Katihar (19.88%), Samastipur (19.66%), Bhagalpur (17.77%), Vaishali (17.53%), East Champaran (16.94%), Purnia (15.69%) and Araria (15.51%).

Translated from the Hindi unique by Naushin Rehman.

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