PAMPORE: The Zinpora area adjoining Pampore is living with a deep, wide breach in the embankment running near it, which keeps it under constant threat of a flood.
The villagers told Kashmir Reader that the land near the embankment has sunk and roads here have developed fissures. The hamlet’s houses seem to have been built on something that is hollow, they said.
“It is very difficult to reside here as even a slight wind swings houses like a high frequency earthquake,” said a Zinpora resident.
Other residents told Kashmir Reader that the villages Zinpora and Bagi Shakoor Shah had already intimated the Irrigation and Flood Control (IFC) Department about the major threat the twin villages were facing after the 2014 floods.
During that flood, the embankment developed fissures, they said. The residents had led a delegation at the time to the officials, who visited the place and assured them that repair work would be carried out on a priority basis.
“The team of engineers said after visiting the spot that deep burrowing would be done along with stone work on an immediate basis, but nothing was done till the fissures widened during the recent rise in water level,” said Fayaz Ahmad Dar, adding that since then the officials came to the place only a few days back, when the threat seemed to have returned.
He told Kashmir Reader that at present the authorities have come to the spot and started a temporary piling at a few places.
“If they cannot do the stone work, piling should be done in a way that it would not be washed away in one go,” he warned.
AEE Flood Control, sub-division Pampore, Gulzar Ahmad said that there has been a flashing of the embankment that has weakened it.
He said that due to traffic movement, the piling had also slowly and steadily started to wash away as the cushion had vanished with the passage of time, leading to a cavity which had created the fissures.
“It needs long-term measures as we have submitted a project which is under observation. When it would be approved, we will take suitable action. A team, including the Governor, has observed that that very part of the embankment has a thrust of water which requires to be done away with, using suitable measures,” he said, adding that a temporary restoration was in process.
Meanwhile, the residents have appealed to Governor N N Vohra to take appropriate measures to save the two habitations from being washed away.
With a threat of floods looming over most parts of the Valley, areas lying on or near embankments are intensely worried about their strength and structural capability. After the devastating floods of 2014, people residing near embankments are now panicked after only a few centimetres of rain or if water levels rise by a single foot.
The residents of Pampore have time and again blamed the authorities for their lackadaisical approach in strengthening the embankments which has left them in constant fear of flooding.
They have appealed to the authorities to strengthen the embankments at the earliest or they would make a stir whose consequences would be blamed on the authorities alone.