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Nellore: Revetment wall soon along Penna river

A street in Venkateswara Puram area inundated with floodwater from Penna river
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A street in Venkateswara Puram area inundated with floodwater from Penna river

Highlights

  • Water Resources Minister Anil Kumar asks the irrigation officials to prepare plans for protecting the areas close to the river
  • Many areas witnessed inundation due to huge outflows from Somasila Reservoir

Nellore: The state government has decided to construct revetment wall along the Penna river in the city to prevent soil erosion and damage during floods as well.

The city has been facing a severe threat from the flash floods and heavy water outflows during the rainy season.

According to sources, several low-lying areas, Venkateswara Puram, Janardhan Reddy Colony, Islampet, Bhagat Singh Colony, Ali Nagar and Lalitha Nagar were inundated in floodwaters and people had spent sleepless nights when the flood level was raising even up to 1.70 lakh cusecs. Fortunately, the water level receded from areas as inflows into the Somasila Reservoir were reduced.

The Somasila Reservoir is receiving 28,000 cusecs inflows on Thursday and the outflows are 25,500 cusecs and the water level in reservoir is stood at 74 tmc feet. The water level in Kandaleru was stood at 43 tmc feet, where floodwater has been diverted from Somasila reservoir.

Officials are planning to construct revetment wall from Old Penna Bridge to Penna bridge on the national highway for protecting the local population of Venkateswara Puram and Bhagat Singh colonies from flood threat.

In fact, riverbank erosion occurs when water erodes at the banks of a river which is a naturally occurring process. Normally, clearing vegetation, flooding, heavy rainfall, and many others cause erosion, say experts in engineering. But, in the case of Nellore, banks were damaged due to human habitations and sand mining. Officials also neglected their maintenance due to the rare occasion of water flow in the river.

According to an official in irrigation department, Water Resources Minister Anil Kumar has initially planned to construct a revetment between old and new Penna bridges for avoiding sudden outflows from Somasila reservoir. He also asked the irrigation officials to prepare plans for protecting the areas close to the river.

According to sources, there were many colonies along the bank in the city and they cannot be evacuated. "The officials are planning to construct gabions, geotextiles, or some other revetment mode for protecting the banks from flood threat," said an official from the irrigation department.

Further, many irrigation canals in the city also faced the wrath of human interference and they have to be widened. The city witnessed a flashflood in November 2015 due to heavy rains and the situation has also to be considered while strengthening the riverbanks, he added.

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