Pallahara: Farmers in Angul district regularly face acute water crisis. To ease their woes the district administration is planning to use the water from a rivulet which has its origin from the Malyagiri hill.
Plans are afoot to build a check dam atop the Malyagiri hill. Sources said that once completed the check dam would benefit over 700 local farmers belonging to Ishwarnagar and Batisuan panchayats. The proposed project will also attract tourists round the year. In this manner revenue income can also be ramped up in the district.
There are 15 villages belonging to the Ishwarnagar and Batisuan panchayats. The proposed irrigation project has been taken up jointly by the Angul Forest Department and the Pallahara Panchayat Samiti. Pallahara MLA Mukesh Kumar Pal has asked administrative officials to present a budget for the project.
Malyagiri hill is located at Samal village of Ishwarnagar panchayat and is nine kilometres away from the Angul district headquarters. The hill is 3,395 feet high and spreads over approximately 11,500 hectares.
Pal, block chairperson Nabakishore Nayak, ranger Duryodhan Jerei, forester Bhimsen Satpathy had inspected the site for building the proposed dam recently.
“At least we can cultivate different crops twice a year once the dam is built,” said local farmers Ranjan Sethy and Sarat Pradhan. “We have been facing water crisis for years now. We have to depend on rainfall only. We will be able to grow vegetables along with paddy once we get water from the dam,” they added.