KEONJHAR: Union Minister of State for Water Resources Bisweswar Tudu on Friday expressed dissatisfaction over inordinate delay in implementation of the Kanpur Irrigation Project on Baitarani river in Basudevpur village in Keonjhar district. Tudu, who reviewed the project in Joda block on the day, said the delay has affected farmers who have been waiting for decades to reap the benefits.
The project touted to usher in a green revolution by irrigating over 406 hectares of farmland in 27 villages across Champua, Joda, Jhumpura, Sadar and Patna blocks in the district, has been making little headway for eight years now. Starting in 1994, the project work was halted in 2008 due to inadequate funds but again took off in 2013. However, the construction works of spillway, canal and bridge over NH 520 as part of the project witnessed unreasonable delay.
Exhorting people to build collective pressure on the government to expedite the project, Tudu stated that even the rehabilitation process is not complete and the colonies lack basic amenities which is fuelling discontentment among displaced people. Sources said, over 1,200 families from over eight villages in the block were displaced for the project.
During his visit, senior BJP leader Dr Murli Manohar Sharma drew the attention of the Union Minister to the plight of the 50-bed Central Hospital in Joda which is suffering from staff crunch and inadequate infrastructure.
Keonjhar Sadar MLA and Opposition Chief Whip Mohan Charan Majhi, State BJP vice president Sukeshi Oram, party’s district president Anshuman Sabuj Mahantabarma, State Krushak Morcha vice president Radhakant Mahant and BJP district general secretary Anubrat Behera were present, among others.