KENDRAPARA: Panic gripped seaside villages in Mahakalapada block of the district after a breach in saline embankment led to inundation of agricultural land on Saturday night.
“A portion of the saline embankment in Kharinashi village caved in on Saturday night as a result of which tidal waves entered around 2,000 acres of agriculture land in Kharinashi, Ramanagar, Adibashipada and other villages. Several farmers, who had sown paddy seeds two weeks back, are worried over their crop prospects as saline water ingress is likely to damage the farm land, Maheswar Mandal of Kharinashi village said.
Seawater often enters the seaside villages during high tide period due to non-repair of saline embankments and sub-standard sluice gates. The villagers alleged that some prawn farm owners have been damaging the embankments to allow flow of saline water into their farms in the villages to breed shrimps but the authorities are not taking any action, said Balabhadra Mana of Kharinashi.
The embankments in other villages are also on the verge of collapse due to non-repair and many villagers living in the vicinity have been spending sleepless nights, alleged Ranjan Kumar Das, Sarapanch of Kharinashi Gram Panchayat. “We will soon mend the damaged embankment”, said an official of saline embankment division of Aul.