Bidhan Upadhyay, mayor of Asansol Municipal Corporation (AMC), has visited and inspected the various Chhath Puja ghats of Asansol subdivision and has announced that the banks of the 250 Chhath Puja ghats will be concretised soon and tenders of 40 Chhath Puja ghat’s renovations are already been issued.
The supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) based automatic operation system of Durgapur barrage, installed in 2019, has faced difficulty during the prevailing flood situation for want of an expert operator. Instead, Group-D staff has been assigned to run the show, which has drawn flak from the officials as well as public representatives. The SCADA centre is an initiative under the National Hydrology Project of the Centre’s ministry of water resources. State’s irrigation and waterways department however is responsible for the operation of the centre.
Bardhaman Durgapur MP Surinder Singh Ahluwalia, while visiting the centre, ridiculed the state irrigation department for lapses. On Tuesday, he was upset the centre was locked as none was there to operate the system during the emergency situation.
He asked the Irrigation officials: “Why was it introduced when there’s none to run at this critical time?” Sanjoy Majumdar, executive engineer, Damodar head works of the state irrigation department that controls the barrage, said: “Our Group-D staff were operating this, from time to time but due to the current flood alert, all have been assigned to supervise the barrage structure.”
The Rs 1.50 crore SCADA centre was introduced in the Durgapur barrage for explicit assistance to help receiving controlled water discharge information from the upstream reservoirs in Maithon and Panchet (about 60 to 80 km away) also about total discharge at Asansol, besides upstream pond level and downstream discharge from the barrage-based on which the automated system was supposed to decide the desired level of discharge as per the river regulatory guidelines. Six sets of radar-based water level sensors have been installed along the barrage spillway series. Also, three sets were installed in Maithon, Panchet and Asansol for monitoring of river discharge inflow to Durgapur barrage.
The system is powered to upload the database from the barrage control room (BCR) to a web server for hourly feeding to customized clients. The EE, Majumdar said today: “We’ve received one assistant engineer recently, who will look after the system henceforth. We don’t have a dedicated expert for the centre now.”