THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A comprehensive study will be undertaken in the city by New Delhi-based RITES, a premier consultancy organisation in the country, on the perennial problem of flash floods and ways to overcome it through remedial measures.
The State Cabinet has decided to go in for the services of the organisation after it was felt that the city should be relieved of the issue; for, an everlasting solution has now become imperative.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that he was quite sad on being unable to find a viable solution to flooding of the low-lying areas, though the city
has been grappling with the problem since 1979. “Though lots of efforts were made over the years, nothing turned out to be a success,” he said.
The Chief Minister, along with Transport Minister V S Sivakumar, had on Wednesday visited the low-lying areas of the city which bore the brunt of the recent flash floods.
The RITES team will, on January 12, apprise a cabinet sub-committee of their assessment and preliminary findings on the problems faced by the city with regard to floods, followed by discussions with the Chief Minister. The five-member cabinet sub-committee will comprise Ministers of Revenue, Water Resources, Works, Transport and Sports.
Chandy pointed out that the main bottleneck aggravating the flood situation in Thampanoor area was the railway station. Though a channel was cut underneath the area, that seems not enough for the flow of gushing waters.
Restoration of Karamana River, Killiyar
The Chief Minister said that the Cabinet had also asked for a detailed project report to implement a ` 500- crore restoration project for the Karamana River and Killiyar. “It will be implemented with Central assistance,’’ he said.
Chandy said that there are widespread complaints on encroachments on the banks of the two rivers and the proposed project would address this issue also.
The Chief Minister announced one-month free ration for the flood-affected families in the city.
An amount ` 5 crore has been sanctioned for providing financial assistance for those who had lost their houses.