Kerala

Thousands join hands to construct makeshift check-dam across Kabani

Villagers from Kerala and Karnataka constructing a makeshift check-dam across the Kabani river at Marakkadavu in Mullamkolly grama panchayat in Kasaragod on Thursday.  

Thousands of villagers in Kerala and Karnataka joined hands to construct a makeshift check-dam across the Kabani river on the Kerala-Karnataka border on Thursday to tackle drought-like situation in the region.

The 200-metre check-dam has been erected across the river at Marakkadavu in Mullamkolly grama panchayat.

River Kabani is the only source of water for people in Mullamkolly and Bairakuppa grama panchayats in Kerala and Karnataka respectively for drinking and irrigation purposes. But now there is a sharp decline in the flow of water in the region.

Though the government had constructed close to a dozen of check-dams on the tributaries of the Kabani in the region to harness water for irrigational use, they were not operational owing to the dearth of timely maintenance, a villager said.

The Minor Irrigation Department had constructed a makeshift check-dam across the river at its Marakkadavu pumping station when the region experienced an acute shortage of drinking water three years ago.

“As the new check-dam has been erected on the foundation of the old one, it helped us complete the work with ease,” Girija Krishnan, president, Mullamkolly grama panchayat, said.

The panchayat authorities had made elaborate arrangements for the construction works including free food and drinking water for workers at the site and free bus services to the public.

Apart from villagers, workers of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, members of Kudumbasree units, milk cooperatives, farmer and youth organisations, and volunteers of Red Cross took part in the endeavour.

Though Water Resources Minister P.J. Joseph had promised three years ago that the government would implement the proposed Kadmanthode irrigation project on the Kadamanthodu River, a tributary of the Kabani River, to utilise the water awarded by the Cauvery River Tribunal for the State to tackle the water scarcity in the area, it was yet to be implemented.

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Printable version | Oct 23, 2020 3:37:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/thousands-join-hands-to-construct-makeshift-checkdam-across-kabani/article8368337.ece

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