Woes of Bundelkhand: nature alone is not responsible
Lucknow: The drought-hit Bundelkhand region in Uttar Pradesh has been an old battle ground for all the political parties. Nature may not have been kind to the people of Bundelkhand but the subsequent governments have been no less guilty specially the irrigation department of the state for prevailing state of the affairs.
It is hard to believe but there are irrigations projects in Bundelkhand which have been lying incomplete since 30-35 years adding to the woes of the populace which suffered a lot due to consequent droughts.
Lahchura Dam project
- Jhansi's new Lahchura dam is lying incomplete since 37 years.
- The original 542.20 meter Lahchura dam was built on Dhasan river between 1906 and 1910.
- After it outlived its utility, it was planned as new lahchura dam project in 1979 with an estimated cost of 7.04 crore.
Incomple Lahchura Dam
- The cost of the project kept on escalated but even after having spent Rs 285.95 crore, the dam which could cater upto hamirpur district is still incomplete.
- Escalated costs on irrigation projects
- From 17 crore to 71 crore
- Raisin dam project in Karvi tahsil of Chitrakoot district is another example of government's apathy.
- It was sanctioned in 2001 with the cost of Rs 17.24 crore.
- The cost is escalated to Rs 76.36 crore, at present.
- Rs 71 crore including Rs 22 .80 crore from Bundelkhand package has already been spent but only 80 per cent work is done.
- about 2300 hectare land can be irrigated from this project.
- Water of Dhasan river lying un-utilised
- Pahari dam was planned on Dhasan river in Mauranipur tahsil in Jhansi district.
- This project was supposed to be complete on March 28,2013 but till this year just 40 per cent of the work has been completed.
- Its time line is now increased to 2018-19 with an escalated cost of Rs 354.20 crore.
- It was aimed to provide irrigation water to Dhasan canal system.
No money, No work
- The initial cost of lower Rohini dam project was Rs 148.44 crore which increased to 174.26 crore.
- Rs 157.80 had been spent on the project till March 2014 but the work stopped in December 2015 due to paucity of funds.
- parched land in drought-hit Bundelkhand
- Other incomplete works in Bundelkhand
- Kyolari dam project is lying abandoned despite spending Rs 7.78 crore of public money in seven years.
- The 741 crore Arjun command project had only 60 per cent of work done on it despite huge expenditure of Rs 680 crore so far.
- Utari dam project is also incpmplete despite spending of Rs 200 crore.
- The estimated cost of Jamraar dam project is increased to Rs 246.06 crore from rs 167.15 crore but still pending.
- Pahuj Dam's cost reached rs 73.96 crore from Rs 63.52 crore but still to complete.
- Ratauli dam project in kabrai of Mahoba escalated two times but it is still incomplete after years of work on it.
Drought Hit Bundelkhand
- The condition in Bundelkhand districts of Jhansi, Mahoba, Lalitpur, Jalaun, banda, Chitrakoot and Hamirpur is miserable due to lack of rains and drought since about 30 years.
- The Samajwadi Party government expedited some projects but of no avail.
- Irrigation Minister Shivpal Singh Yadav tried to monitor the projects but inefficient and corrupt department officials failed to deliver results in the region, where irrigation projects are needed the most.
- Principal Secretary , Irrigation of UP , Deepak Singhal was not forthcoming to speak on these incomplete projects.
- It may be mentioned that Deepak Singhal has been lobbying hard to become the Chief Secretary of the state.