Big Dams in North East India : KMSS to intensify stir against

There is proposal for constructing more than 168 big dams in Arunachal Pradesh alone in North East India. In view of forthcoming public hearing by Union Cabinet Minister for Environment and Forests, Jairam Ramesh scheduled for September 10, 2010, the KMSS (Krishak Mukti Sangram Samittee) has appealed to all concerned to intensify the agitation against big dams in North East India.

KMSS has pointed out in their statement that, even smaller dams like Ranganadi in North Lakhipur district, Kopili in Dimasa Hasao ( formerly North Cachar Hills) district are causing flood regularly with widespread devastation in Assam.

“It is only after large-scale public protests that the Centre has agreed to have a public hearing on the impact of large dams. The hearing scheduled for September 10 at the Pragjyoti-ITA Complex at Machkhowa will be a historic occasion, and we appeal to all concerned, to participate the hearing with enthusiasm,” the KMSS said in a statement.

North East India in Zone V in Seismic map

North East India being in seismic Zone V, which has the highest risk of seismic activity, the building of big dams naturally poses great danger to people living downstream. Normally, it is accepted that, it is not possible to build anything which can withstand an earth quake measuring 8 on Richter scale, there have been two major major earth quakes in North East India in last century measuring more than 8 on the Richter scale.

Earth quake which measures 8.0 on Richter scale can produce energy equivalent of 15 Megatons of TNT (Trinitrotoluene) explosives. One may remember, Indian nuclear tests in 1998 yield were in the range of kilotons only. This may give an idea on what kind of danger zones, Government have proposed to build big dams in North East India.

So chances of cracking or breaking up dams in Earth Quake with magnitude of 8.0 or more in Richter scale is quite high in North East India. One may read story of 1950 earth quake in Lakhimpur district Assam : 1950 Earth Quake story.

News Source : Assam Tribune

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