Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Mahanadi Floods: Hirakud dam's inefficient and non-transparent management costs the common people their lives -

Odisha government's water resources department is so efficient in dam management that it cannot even update the current status of Hirakud Reservoir on it's website. The latest that you get is of 12.00 hours today.  Please see the graph pasted below for the exact position.

At the moment, news are coming in that 46 gates of the dam are open. However, news of backwater flooding from Lakhanpur confirm that the Dam is more than full and has become a 'time bomb'. The FRL (Full Reservoir Level) that the dam authorities report in their website is for 630 but Lakhanpur villages that have been flooded are located beyond 632 feet above sea level. The dam's safety comes to a vulnerable position as soon as the water crosses 610 level. You can imagine what situation we are in. A vulnerability that we can't even imagine. And this means, this reporting in website is also wrong.

And the Dam Management Authority are sitting pretty in Bhubaneswar managing things over phone and in a very non transparent manner.

As a friend rightly said, the government authorities are perhaps waiting for a disaster to happen so that they can bag international award for having successfully managed the relief and rescue operations. People can die. In fact, officially, 24 people have already died in floods this time. The actual figure may be much higher. And, the other species don't come into count.

We have been constantly warning the Govt. of Odisha to modernize the management of Hirakud Dam and make it transparent. Nothing changed in their system. I am afraid, we may see a repetition of 2008 and 2011 floods in Mahanadi.

Live Storage Filling of Major Reservoirs as on 06-Aug-2014

Time:1200 hrsTime:1200 hrsTime:0800 hrsTime:0800 hrsTime:0800 hrsTime:0800 hrsTime:0600 hrs
Reservoir Level & position wrt. Full Reservoir Level
RL: 628.17ftRL: 120.22mRL: 1491.4ftRL: 2727.4ftRL: 852.37mRL: 639.08mRL: 81.4m
(-) 1.83ft(-) 3.28m(-) 24.60ft(-) 22.60ft(-) 5.63m(-) 2.92m(-) 0.90m
Reservoir Inflow & Outflow
Live Storage capacity & Live Storage available
Cap:482155 HamCap:341371 HamCap:267600 HamCap:96993 HamCap:93500 HamCap:148550 HamCap:55650 Ham
LS:445402 HamLS:226926 HamLS:150839 HamLS:48832.78 HamLS:45412 HamLS:114362 HamLS:53077 Ham
The RED line corresponds to  Full Reservoir Capacity

(Reservoir Status accessed from dowr website at 17.00 Hours on 6th August 2014)  (

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