Bunds damaged in 2014 floods, still await repair

This south Kashmir town is awaiting reconstruction of its vital protection bunds damaged in 2014 floods.

Locals accused the authorities of failing to repair the bunds damaged during September 2014 floods.

Locals alleged that the Irrigation and Flood Control department did nothing to repair the demolished bunds of various streams in Tral.

People living in the vicinity of streams in Watal Ara, Nowdal Ara, Batagund Ara, Aripal Ara and Chandrigam Ara said they are spending sleepless nights.

They said that in absence of bunds, the flash floods have damaged roads, orchards, paddy fields.

“Vast swathes of agricultural land have been washed away during such floods,” they said.

“Bunds in these areas are either totally damaged or have become fragile. It is sad that the government agencies have not woken up to this issue,” said Aijaz Ahmad a local.

“In the last five years, we approached every officer concerned beseeching them to construct a protection bund on these nullahs but except assurances nothing was done,” he added.

Interestingly, after being let down by the government, locals here in March themselves contributed towards construction of a small footbridge along Watal Ara.

Locals are often seen constructing emergency makeshift footbridges so that the villages like Pinglish, Shikargah, Koil, Laribal and Cheribugh remained connected rest of the town during floods.

An official of Irrigation and Flood Control department Awantipora said on condition of anonymity the department has already sent a proposal to the government for repairing the bunds in Tral area. “But no amount has been released by the government so far for this purpose,” he said.