300 acres under mulberry damaged in Bengal floods
SWIRLING floods have damaged 6,300 acres of mulberry plantation in the State,cheap mulberry bags according to preliminary estimates.
A report on the impact of the floods and the cost of restoration, recently prepared by the West Bengal Government, observed that at least 17,800 sericulturists were affected with the total loss to the sector, being estimated at nearly Rs 8 crores (exclud
West Bengal is a traditional silk producing State, where all the four types of silk mulberry, tasar, eri and muga are made. Annual production is estimated at 14.2 lakh kg. The major item, mulberry silk, is produced in all areas of the State
, barring Calcutta and Howrah. Of course, Murshidabad remains the major centre.
While agriculture sector bore the brunt of the deluge (loss estimated at Rs 1,500 crores), almost every sector has been affected by the rainfall and the consequent discharge from the Masanjor Dam and the Tikpara barrage. Uptil now over 1,000 people are
feared to have lost their lives in the calamity.
Roads, a weak link in West Bengal’s infrastructure, has taken a hard beating and cost of restoration has been pegged at Rs 110 crores with the damage being assessed at Rs 250 crores. And Murshidabad is the worst affected.
The cash strapped West Bengal State Electricity Board has suffered damages worth Rs 50 crores, mostly in its transmission system, but also to installations at the power stations, which at times ran the risk of getting submerged. In many cases, the affect
ed areas could not be approached, as they are still inundated and the extent of damage has only been roughly assessed. Wherever possible efforts are being made to replace the damaged concrete foundations with special type of erection which can be carried
out fast so that power supply can be restored, WBSEB sources said.
At least 14 lakh houses are estimated to have been damaged by the floods which have forced thousands to seek shelter in relief camps and under tarpaulin sheets.
The loss has been quantified at Rs 280 crores. Not only houses, but health centers and hospitals were also affected partially or wholly. In almost all the nine affected districts health service restoration would take time even after the floods recede sin
ce in many cases the damages were extensive.
In the fishery sector, it is estimated that prawn fish seed worth Rs 1 crore has been lost in North 24 Parganas. The total loss to the sector has been assessed at Rs 18 crores.