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Teesta spurs plan to relocate residents of two forest villages in north Bengal | Mio Kitchen


Officials of the Rajganj block land and land reforms department will visit the affected village on Wednesday
The Laltong village submerged by the Teesta on Tuesday.: Passang Yolmo

Bireswar Banerjee, TT, Siliguri, 10.07.24 :  The Jalpaiguri district administration has decided to relocate the residents of two forest villages which are on the right bank of the Teesta as the river has gobbled up one of the hamlets and is steadily approaching the other.

The existence of Laltongbusty and Chamakdangi, which are near Sevoke, from where the mighty Teesta descends from the hills, is at stake. The Teesta has engulfed almost the entire Laltongbusty village and damaged a spur which was built to save Chamakdangi from the water.

“Almost the entire Laltong village has been swallowed by the Teesta. The villagers have shifted to a temporary shelter in an adjacent locality. But considering the situation, the administration has decided to relocate all 36 families of the village,” said Khageswar Roy, the Trinamool Congress MLA of Rajganj, who visited the area on Tuesday.

Officials of the Rajganj block land and land reforms department will visit the affected village on Wednesday.

“They will identify an alternative place where the villagers can be relocated. In due course, we will also relocate the residents of Chamakdangi,” the MLA added.

Chamakdangi has around 50 families. Both the villages are located near Siliguri and on the fringes of the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary.

Residents of Laltong have said the Teesta swells during the monsoon and flows almost parallel to the base of the hamlet.

However, this year, the river breached the banks and flooded Laltong.

Gele Sherpa, who has been residing in Laltong for over three decades, said he had never witnessed the river cause too much devastation like this time.

“Only three huts are left in the village where some of the male members are staying. The women, elderly persons and children have been sent to their relatives’ places at Mongpong, Salugara and Siliguri,” he said.

At Laltong, the families used to earn a livelihood by farming, poultry and dairy. They supply poultry products and milk to different markets in Siliguri.

“But because of the flood, we stopped visiting the markets in the past couple of weeks. The cattle and thepoultry have been shiftedto safer locations. These days, we are thriving on the food grains supplied by thestate government and NGOs,” said Sherpa.

At Chamakdangi, which is around 4km from Laltong, the Teesta has not yet entered the village but has badly damaged a 100-metre-long stony spur that was put to stop the river from approaching the village.

“The spur can collapse any time. The state irrigation department should immediately build a 200-metre-long spur to save the village,’ said Champey Mukhia, a villager.

He said the residentshad appealed to the administration and the MLA fortheir relocation.

“The MLA has assured us that the administration is scouting for land where wecan be shifted. There are around 50 families in the village,” said Mukhia.

(Courtesy & source : The Telegraph)

https://www.telegraphindia.com/west-bengal/teesta-spurs-plan-to-relocate-residents-of-two-forest-villages-in-north-bengal/cid/2032738

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