Forty-five-foot-deep and 175-ft-wide breach occurred due to floods on the banks of Sutlej river close to Bholewal Qadim village in Ludhiana was repaired on Saturday evening. The breach, which occurred on Monday night, resulted in the flooding of one temple, fields and roads.
The breach had occurred after 2.4 lakh cusec water was released from Bhakra. In a distance of 6 km, a total of 10 breaches occurred on the banks of Sutlej out of which one was in Ludhiana and the rest in Phillaur area.
Punjab Water Resources Minister Sukhbinder Sarkaria made a third visit to Bholewal Qadim village on Saturday morning. “Workers of MGNREGA and local residents have plugged the breach which was very deep. Breach at Garhi Fazal village in Mattewara complex has already been plugged,” he said.
Although excess flow of water from Sutlej was the main reason for breaches of river banks, a villager at Bholewal Qadim said, “Many villagers install water pipes through the banks of Sutlej river to take direct water to their fields for irrigation. This also weakens the banks. Villagers don’t want to see this hard fact.”
The body of 17-year-old Jagjit Singh who had drowned in flood water at Dhadi Kadim village on Friday afternoon was recovered by an NDRF team from Santokh Singhwala village on Saturday morning. Now the number of flood-affected villages of Fazilka has reached 18 while more than 30 villages of Ferozepur have been affected due to floods. Late in the evening, breach occured in Sutlej river near Tindiwala village in Ferozepur district due to which around 10 villages were told to evacuate.
Bittu visits flood-hit villages
After receiving criticism, Ludhiana MP Ravneet Bittu visited Ludhiana and went to flood-affected villages. Bittu was in Delhi when floods occurred. On Friday, he released a press note that he met Union Minister of Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh Shekhawat in Delhi to find a permanent solution to the problems related to the 14-km stretch of Buddha Nallah. The Union Minister will visit Ludhiana next month, he said.