Braving heavy monsoon shower, Chief Minister Kalikho Pul today personally supervised the clearing of debris and garbage that had choked the drain water flowing through a Hume pipe culvert near Civil Secretariat.
Two days of heavy downpour had led to flooding of the drain water leading to inundation of several houses upstream. A small reservoir was formed in the upstream of Hume Pipe culvert due to the choked drain water posing risk to several buildings downstream of being washed away if the flood water broke.
Assessing the critical situation, the chief minister earlier visited the residential areas in upstream and the downstream. He instructed immediate shutting off all the power lines in nearby shops and residential areas to prevent electrocution that could occur due to fallen power lines.
He potted several kutcha and pucca houses that were built right over the river course including a 7-storied hotel complex. “The clogging of drain water in the basement of the hotel could pose severe risk to the hotel itself and to the nearby building and put several lives to danger,” said the CM accompanied by Chief Secretary Shakuntala Gamlin and Director, Disaster Management YW Ringu.
The reason the CM observed for the blockage of drain water was the clogging of the Hume culvert with garbage of plastics and no proper rooms were allowed for free flow of water. He therefore appealed the people to throw garbage at the designated places and not to litter it around the drain water.
On being reported that wastes were produced from a nearby hotel and shopping complexes, he instructed the local administration to issue strict orders to impose penalty henceforth if found littering of garbage.
To prevent clogging of drain water and rivers in the capital region, the CM said the river course would be properly channelized and wherever required cc steps, culverts and returning wall would be constructed so that river water do not cause damages to the nearby structures.
Personally supervising the clearance of the choked drain and instructed to release water in small amount so that the water does not gush down in huge amount posing threat of flooding and destroying the downstream areas.
For immediate restoration of the Hume Bridge, he informed that it would be replaced with concrete cement bridge, which was confirmed by the Chief Engineer, PWD (Highway) Bora Ete and was agreed by the central government.
On disaster preparedness level, the CM informed that NDRF and SDRF personnel were on full alert with all equipments and machineries ready to be put on service.
Pointing out the repeated disasters especially in Itanagar and Naharlagun, he said Arunachal is in high seismic zone and the capital region is very prone to disasters. It is hilly, has steep terrain with loose and sandy soil and gets easily washed out during heavy downpour. So full flood safety measures need to be adopted, said the CM.
“Government has in place all the laws to prevent disasters. So I appeal the media and civil societies to make people aware of such laws so that people would want to adopt it for their own safety,” he said.
The CM said he was open to criticism but also preferred solutions to be pointed out, and appreciated the recent inputs in local dailies that had pointed our several lacunae on part of the public and the government.
On relief measures for the disaster, he instructed the district administration to take photographic and video evidences of the affected areas and to immediately disburse the relief amount.
He said there should be no shortage of relief funds and instructed the secretary and director of the disaster management and relief and rehabilitation department to keep update in case the fund position is exhausted.
He further appealed the public, NGO and media to assist in reporting any disaster to the local administration so that immediate relief and restoration could be taken up.
The CM further informed that government will be carrying out works for Itanagar-Banderdewa highway. He appealed that there must be no construction of structures within the Right of Way.