Canal water seepage in Punjab

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Muktsar (Punjab), Feb 26 (ANI): Seepage water in canals in Punjab's Muktsar district has caused water logging in fields.

Water logged fields and houses in the area have developed crack.

The fields, which used to yield crops, are now serving as habitat for wild ducks. The situation has forced the farmers to abandon farming and work as daily wage laborers.

"The farmers who were owners of 40 acres farmlands are now forced to work as daily wage laborers. They have no other alternative as their fields have been destroyed by waterlogging," said Hajoor Singh, a farmer.

The houses in the region have developed cracks. Cracked walls, gaping holes, broken roofs and caved in houses are among the problems that the villagers are facing in Muktsar.

Many of the villagers have left their houses and relocated to safer places.

"Our houses became flooded with water, so we had to leave our house and relocate to Bhatinda. If something is not done to check the problem, then other areas will also get affected in the same manner," said Jaswinder Singh, another farmer.

Around 2500 square kilometer of area in Muktsar is affected by waterlogging, out of which 848 square kilometer has been listed as critical.

According to Punjab's drainage department, the seepage problem is a natural calamity, which they are working hard to control by making new drains and conducting subsurface drainage in critical areas.

"We are making new drains. We are also doing subsurface drainage in critical areas," said Hassan Lal, Senior Engineer, Drainage Department, Giddarbaha.

The drainage department has appealed to the Central authorities for help and has also put in a request to the World Bank for a grant of 12 billion rupees for the project.

The authorities feel that the problem if not checked now, will pose a threat to nearby areas as well and might even spread to Rajasthan. By Avtar Gill (ANI)

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