KO Impact: Tenders Floated For Construction Of Batwudur Canal

Firdous Ali

Srinagar: After an alleged delay of seven years, the authorities have finally issued a tender notice for the reconstruction of a water canal in Batwudur area of Budgam district damaged by a landslide during 2014 floods.

The Chief Executive Engineer, Irrigation Division, Ompora, Budgam has issued an e-tender notice inviting registered contractors to construct and commission MS/ RCC Flume on Batwudur canal, reads an order e-NIT No 19 of 07/2021.

As per the order, the canal will be constructed at a cost of Rs 18.40 lac, including department supply. The work has to be completed in 45 days.

It is pertinent to mention that Kashmir Observer in its widely acclaimed programme 'Inkishaaf' on June 16 reported about the failure of the irrigation and flood control department to restore a vital water body damaged by a landslide during the 2014 floods for want of approval from the higher ups.

Two days after the KO report, a team of Agriculture Department officials led by Director Choudhary Iqbal had visited Batwudur, Surasyar in Central Kashmir and took stock of the situation due to the blockade of a water canal that used to serve as a major source of irrigation for paddy fields spread over two thousand kanals of land.

The visit was carried out on the instructions of Principal Secretary Navin Kumar Chowdhary.

“I visited the area and took firsthand stock of the situation. I will submit the report to the government within two days,” Director Agriculture, Choudhary Iqbal had told Kashmir Observer.

According to the villagers, a paddy field spread over 2000 kanals of land in the remote Batwudur area of Budgam used to be a major source of income for hundreds of families of Surasyar, Bonyen, Kathiyar and other adjoining villages till 2014. However, a landslide triggered by incessant rains in 2014 damaged the only water canal that villagers used to irrigate their paddy fields, turning it barren.

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