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Assam losing 8000 hectares land every year due to floods

Assam losing 8000 hectares land every year due to floods

Floods hit Assam every year during the monsoon, this year, more than 100 people have died and 4.53 million have been affected so far in 32 districts out of 35 in Assam.

According to the Union Home Ministry website, as of June 21, 2022, 81 people have died in Assam in the monsoon season, of which 64 people have died from drowning and 17 people have died from landslides. About 1 lakh 8306 ha of agricultural land is in the hands of floods. 7,636 animals have also died from the floods. More than 1.20 lakh houses have been fully or partially damaged due to flooding.

Floods hit Assam every year during the monsoon, this year, more than 100 people have died and 4.53 million have been affected so far in 32 districts out of 35 in Assam.

The average annual loss due to flooding in Assam is estimated at around Rs 200 crore, according to the Assam Department of Water Resources. The devastation of this year is already evident.

Land degradation in Assam is also increasing rapidly due to these rivers. The Brahmaputra valley in Assam is considered the country’s most dangerous area from the point of view of flooding. Here, about 40 per cent of the land (3.2 million hectares) has been damaged due to flooding.

According to the Assam government, the damage caused by erosion amounts to several hundred million rupees every year. It has been a serious problem for the last six decades. The average annual loss of land is almost 8,000 hectares. The width of the Brahmaputra has increased up to 15 km in some places due to erosion of the banks. The state’s fertile riverine farmland is shrinking due to erosion. This has a negative impact on the rural economy of Assam.

According to the National Flood Commission, Assam has a flood-prone area of ​​31.05 lakh hectares (39.58%) of the total land area, which is 10.2 per cent of the total flood-prone area of ​​the country. Assam has experienced flooding every year since 1953 and at least 2,000 villages are affected by flooding each year.

In the 2020-21 report of the Parliamentary Committee on Water Resources, the report quoted the National Flood Commission as saying that 4,27,000 hectares of land have been eroded in Assam since 1954 but so far, which is about 7 per cent of the total state area and annual land erosion. The annual average loss of land is nearly 8,000 hectares. Also striking in this report is that the area of the Brahmaputra River has almost doubled in the last century. That is, a large part of the earth has been absorbed into the Brahmaputra.

Assam faced major floods in 1954, 1962, 1972, 1977, 1984, 1988, 1998, 2002, 2004, and 2012. Almost every year, three or four waves of floods hit the flood-prone areas of Assam. The average annual loss due to flooding in Assam is in the order of Rs. 200.00 crore and particularly in 1998, the loss incurred was around Rs. 500.00 crore and during the year 2004 it was around Rs. 771.00 crore.

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