Rs 12cr for Deepor Beel - Waterbody bill passed in Assembly

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By Staff Reporter
  • Published 18.07.08

July 18: Dispur today announced a Rs 12-crore fund to re-acquire private land in and around Deepor Beel as the Assembly passed the Guwahati Waterbodies (Preservation and Conservation) Bill, 2008.

The move aims at preserving the wetland, minimising the problem of waterlogging in the city and creating an eco-friendly atmosphere.

Guwahati development department minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told the Assembly today that Dispur would not allow further construction in and around the waterbody and re-acquire plots allotted by the government.

“With the passage of the Guwahati Waterbodies (Preservation and Conservation) Bill, 2008, in the assembly today the government is totally focused on effective protection and preservation of all waterbodies in the city. By re-acquiring the plots in and around Deepor Beel, the government will go for development projects, including water sports, at the beel,” Sarma said.

Deepor Beel, 18km southwest of the city, is surrounded by the Bharalu basin in the east, the Kalamani in the west, Jalukbari Beel in the north and Rani and Garbhanga reserve forests in the south. It was designated a Ramsar Site in November 2002.

In recent years, construction of railway lines along the southern boundary of the beel, largescale encroachment, allotment of land to private parties and setting up of brick factories on the periphery of the beel have raised concerns about its conservation.

When AGP legislator Aloka Desai Sarma said diverting the Bahini’s water to Deepor Beel — an ambitious project being executed by the government — might pollute the waterbody, Sarma said necessary steps would taken to address the problem.

Replying to questions raised by AGP legislator Ramendra Narayan Kalita on artificial floods in the city, Sarma said the government had adopted various measures to minimise the problem.

The PWD, the Guwahati Municipal Corporation and the water resources department are cleaning up drains and desilting the Bharalu and the Bahini, he added.