Friday, Dec 15, 2017 | Last Update : 12:32 AM IST

Bihar canal wall collapses just before inauguration

THE ASIAN AGE. | NAYEAR AZAD
Published : Sep 21, 2017, 3:37 am IST
Updated : Sep 21, 2017, 3:37 am IST

Sources said the chief minister has asked the concerned department to assess the damage done to the canal and submit a report at the earliest.

Water gushes in as a wall of the Kohalgaon dam collapsed during trial run near Bhagalpur in Bihar on Wednesday, ahead of its scheduled inauguration by chief minister Nitish Kumar. (Photo: PTI)
 Water gushes in as a wall of the Kohalgaon dam collapsed during trial run near Bhagalpur in Bihar on Wednesday, ahead of its scheduled inauguration by chief minister Nitish Kumar. (Photo: PTI)

Patna: The state government on Tuesday cancelled the inauguration of Ganga pump canal scheme after a portion of the canal wall collapsed in Bhagalpur.

Insiders say that the incident has caused embarrassment to chief minister Nitish Kumar, who was to inaugurate the Rs 389 crore project which was aimed at providing irrigation facilities in Bihar and neighbouring Jharkhand.

Sources said the chief minister has asked the concerned department to assess the damage done to the canal and submit a report at the earliest. According to an insider, the state government may also constitute an internal probe against officials who were involved with the project.

“Bad quality of the construction could be one of the major causes for the collapse of canal wall,” a source from Bhagalpur told this newspaper on Wednesday.

However, the chief minister’s office on Wednesday said that the inauguration program got cancelled due to “technical reasons”. The wall of the canal collapsed when the water from the Ganga crashed into it during the trial run on Tuesday.

The damage caused to the canal wall also caused flash flood in several areas including the residential areas of the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) at Kahalgaon. Principal secretary of the water resources department Arun Kumar Singh and other officials were making efforts to drain out water from the inundated areas. However, according to water resources minister Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lallan Singh, “the incident occurred because the water was released in full capacity.”

The Ganga pump canal scheme was a joint project of Bihar and Jharkhand, under which 18.620 hectares of land in Bhagalpur was to benefit and 4038 hectares of land in Godda district of Jharkhand was to get the irrigation facility.

Tags: nitish kumar, bihar canal
Location: India, Bihar, Patna