Ramakanta Biswas

Sambalpur: The proposed additional spillway project on the left dyke of Hirakud Dam in Sambalpur is facing stiff opposition from local residents of the district.

According to sources, a spillway will be constructed to ensure safety of the dam and increase its floodwater discharge capacity. Expressing disappointment that the spillway would affect their livelihood, some farmers in the locality have met the chief engineer of Hirakud Dam.

"We were earlier displaced from our land due to the construction of Hirakud Dam. If the proposed spillway is constructed, we will be displaced again and our lives will be ruined," said Laxman Pandey, a farmer.

On the other hand, Hirakud Dam's Chief Engineer Sunil Kumar Nayak said the project is in survey stage now. Recently, a recce of the area was conducted using drone cameras.

"We are verifying the feasibility of the project including the length of the project, discharge of water and its flow to nearby areas. We have captured photographs of the area using drone cameras," Nayak said.

"Three alternative locations have also been identified. Whichever is suitable, the proposed spillway will be constructed there," he added.