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Brahmaputra - a cause of sorrow for the people of Assam
Following the current year's devastating flood in Assam, amidst growing anti-government resentment in the state, the government at the Centre as well as the state, without buying any time, held China responsible for the natural calamity.

The government has accused Beijing of not sharing hydrological data of the mighty Brahmaputra with New Delhi.

The Brahmaputra originates in Tibet, flows through Assam, causing flood every year during summer. But this year's flood was more devastating than last few decades and claimed the lives of more than 73 people besides causing innumerable losses to lakhs of poor farmers.

The previous UPA regime had signed a hydrological data sharing treaty with Beijing in 2013 under which the latter agreed to share data on the Brahmaputra river with New Delhi from May to October every year. However, Beijing abstained from sharing the data with New Delhi this year. Pointing out the issue Assam's influential minister Himanta Biswa Sharma, a few days ago lambasted the state's intellectuals, who were critical of the government, for not discussing the issue in the public forum.

But what is more worrying is that New Delhi, reportedly, is yet to take up the issue with Beijing anew. If the issue is not resolved before next May, then the possibility of massive floods in the next summer in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh seems large.

Meanwhile, the opposition Congress raised the issue few days ago without any heed from the government. Former Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the Centre's reluctance to raise the issue with Beijing. The former chief minister reportedly criticized the PM for not discussing the issue with Beijing during his last visit to China for participating in the BRICS summit held in September this year.

The mighty Brahmaputra and its tributaries, inundating huge tracts of farming lands in summer, ever year have caused innumerable losses to millions of farmers in Assam.

Similarly, erosion by rivers turns rampant during summer in almost all the districts of the state including Majuli, the largest human inhabited river island of the world. Nevertheless, no fruitful measure is initiated to tackle the flood and erosion in the state till today.

Recently, the state government prepared a scheme to dredge the Brahmaputra river. But a section of experts is of the opinion that the result of dredging the Brahmaputra would be not fruitful if proper and scientific study of the river is not done before the dredging. A recent study of the Guwahati-based Down Town University pointed out that the government should take pragmatic steps for tackling the flood problem fruitfully.

The Brahmaputra, which is often considered as the lifelineof the people of Assam, though, it causes misery to many, covers nearly 2,900 kilometres and embraces the basin area of around 6,51,300 square kilometres. Its silts make the land of the both banks fertile helping the growing of riparian civilization.

Traditionally, Mising people, a tribal community, reside near the banks of the Brahmaputra. Thus, they have to face the ire of the river during summers every year more than others.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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