$1m spent on river embankment project
KUNDUZ CITY (PAN): Hundreds of homes and thousands of acres of farmland along Amu River banks have been protected from flooding with the execution of a project in northeastern Kunduz province, an official said on Saturday.
Amu River Water Control Director Eng Mohammad Naeem Nawabi told Pajhwok Afghan News the one million dollars scheme included digging the river’s basin four to six metres and establishing temporary embankments at vulnerable points.
He said more than 30,000 acres of land in Imam Sahib district had been made cultivable as a result of the project.
Provincial council member Mohammad Yousuf Ayubi said 3,000 homes near the river had been protected from the risk of being washed away with the project implementation.
Last year, ministers of agriculture, rural development, water and energy and Afghanistan Natural Disasters Management Authority (ANDMA) officials visited the area and decided to beef up Amu River banks, he recalled.
Ayubi requested the government to hand over the land to their owners by issuing them legal documents.
Families living close to the river hailed the project and called for the construction of permanent embankments along the Afghan side of the river to stem massive erosion.
Resident Shah Mahmood said the project would have been effective if it had been carried out on permanent basis. He feared if the water level increased, the new embankments could be damaged.
Local officials said the Amu River, which flows for more than 2,400 km and forms most of Afghanistan’s northern border with Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, has already swept away 70,000 acres of land and hundreds of homes since 2003.
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