Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh along with a team of cabinet ministers and MLAs on Monday inspected the dredging work taken up as part of the rejuvenation work of Lamphelpat Water body by the Reach Dredging Ltd.
For the last many decades, the Imphal City has been facing regular flash floods during the rainy season.
Even with a few hours of rainfall, flooding occurs at the campus of RIMS, including some parts of Sagolband and Uripok road. The Kakwa area is also prone to flooding with only hours of rainfall. The inundation also causes road mishaps.
Although the Imphal Municipal Corporation (IMC) has been taking various measures to control the flash flood, Imphal city has been facing frequent flash flood issues due to the decreasing water bodies in the city area.
In recent years, the state has been witnessing an expansion of urban areas with rapid construction activities for residential, commercial purposes and public conveniences all around, fast edging out several wetland areas, big and small.
It has been reported earlier that there were about 500 lakes in the valley of the state in the early 20th century, but the number had reduced to hardly 55 lakes in the state by the 1950s.
Amid the increasing concerns, experts have suggested taking up the Rs 650-crore project at Lamphelpat in 2021 only after conducting proper scientific assessment of the area and its relation with the surrounding Langol Hill Range.
Lamphelpat, one of the biggest wetlands located in Manipur’s capital Imphal, is long associated with the history, culture and ethos of the state. The wetland is a catchment area that lies near the foothills of the Langol Hill Range and is surrounded by the hill range in an arc shape.
With the ever-increasing human population over the years and unplanned urbanisation in the state, the condition of the wetland had been rapidly degrading.
The Lamphelpat wetland area was once filled with lush green vegetation, with abundant flora and fauna. It was also a habitat of “Kombirei”, an endangered flowering plant of Manipur and a breeding ground of rare species of the Manipuri pony.
The rejuvenation work of Lamphelpat Water body was started to conserve the water bodies in the valley area and to control flash floods that have been occurring in the Imphal city for the last decades.
The inspection was accompanied by cabinet ministers Govindas Konthoujam; Awangbow Newmai; Sapam Ranjan Singh; Thounaojam Basanta Kumar Singh and Kashim Vashum; MLAs Thongam Shanti Singhp; S Kebi; Khongbantabam Ibomcha; Kh Joykisan officials of the water resources, among others during the inspection.