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NESAC asked to include depth of sand layers in ambit of River Atlas for Assam


GUWAHATI: Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal who mooted the idea of preparing a comprehensive database of all major and minor rivers of Assam along with their tributaries in the form of a River Atlas, on Thursday assessed the preparation of the Atlas and asked implementing agency to bring quantity and depth of sand and sand layer on the river bed within the ambit of the study.

Chairing a meeting at the conference room of the Chief Minister’s Office in Janata Bhawan on Thursday evening to take stock of the progress made so far in preparing the first ever River Atlas in the State, Sonowal said that the project should encompass depth of sand layer within the parameter of its study along with identifying sand bars above the Highest Flood Level (HFL). He said that identification of sand bars above the HFL would help the state government’s possible bid to use the sand bars as ‘Solar Parks’.

It may be noted that North Eastern Space Application Centre (NESAC), Umiam, Meghalaya which is the implementing agency for the proposed River Atlas would encompass all the districts of the state in preparing the database and the entire exercise would be complete by December 2018. The River Atlas would also feature the source of origin of all the major rivers and their tributaries.

Chief Minister Sonowal said that since the decision of preparing the River Atlas had been taken with an objective of creating a deterrent against flood and erosion, the proposed Atlas should exclusively address the flood and erosion management along the major rivers and their tributaries in state. He also said that efforts should also be made for the Atlas to act as hydro-meteorological observatories.

Sonowal also said that the River Atlas once completed would give the proper database of the length of the rivers, the embankment details of the entire 5000 km network of embankment in the state. Besides, the River Atlas would also give reading on river flood level. Sonowal also stressed that the study should bring within its ambit the reported deforestation which might attribute to reduced water flow in some rivers in the state. He further added that if a proper database was obtained for the deforestation induced reduced water flow in the rivers, state government could take the remedial steps for adequate afforestation, as a part of state government’s decision to plant 10 crore saplings in the state throughout the year.


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