Release of water to the right bank canal was suspended from Thursday
Standing crops in about 450 hectares were damagedDepartment has estimated the loss at Rs.3.50 crore
RAICHUR: The release of water to the Narayanapura Right Bank Canal was suspended from Thursday following damage of a huge portion of the high embankment at its 69th mile stretch near Galag village in Deodurga taluk on Wednesday.
The water supply in the canal was continued till its 15th distributory to take up summer crops in its command areas covering Lingsugur and Deodurga taluks. The ayacutdars have taken up sowing of jowar, groundnut, paddy and chilli in about 45,000 hectares.
The canal was damaged forcing the authorities concerned to suspend release at a time when the crops were one month old.
A huge portion of 8.50-metre thick high embankment at the canal just before its 12th distributory was damaged on Wednesday when the release was 500 cusecs. The leakage of water through the damaged portion continued this morning as no officials concerned reached the spot to stop the leakage. As a result a huge portion of the embankment was washed away leaving a 20 metre deep crater.
Water gushed into the fields damaging the standing crops under the command of the 12th distributory. According to estimates, standing crops such as jowar, groundnut, paddy and chilli in about 450 hectares were damaged. The department has estimated the total loss at Rs.3.50 crore.
Minister in-charge of the district Hanumanthappa Alkod inspected the canal and assessed the damage of crops.
A group of farmers complained to the Minister that the continued negligence of the officials of the nigam has led to the mishap. They told the Minister that no officials reached the spot on time even after a member of the Galag Gram Panchayat sent a message to them. On enquiry, Mr. Nataraj told the Minister that a hole developed in the embankment of the canal owing to poor structure of an underground cross drainage beneath it.
The department has taken steps to repair the damaged portion. It would take at least ten days to complete the work, he said.
He ordered officials to complete the repair work within a week.
Speaking to presspersons, the Minister said that he apprised the Minister of Water Resources K.S. Eshwarappa on the situation. He would also meet the Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on Friday at Bangalore and ask him to arrange for early assessment of the damage to crops and arrange for compensation.