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‘Modi hai to mumkin hai’: Watch the people of Kutch celebrating the arrival of Narmada waters, after years of ‘andolanjivis’ hindering progress

The people of Mod Kuba have waited for decades for the water to reach their village. Notably, several ‘andolanjivis’, including Medha Patkar, had made it difficult for the state government to complete the project.

On July 6, the floodwaters of Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Limited (SSNNL) finally reached Mod Kuba, the village that marks the tail-end of Kutch Branch Canal (KBC). As the water approached the village, hundreds of people lined up and cheered with happiness.

The people of Mod Kuba have waited for decades for the water to reach their village. Notably, several ‘andolanjivis’, including Medha Patkar, had made it difficult for the state government to complete the project. It was only after Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge at the centre that the blockades in the Sardar Sarovar Dam project were cleared.

‘Modi hai to mumkin hai’

Videos of farmers emerged on social media in which they were cheering as the water reached the villages. In one of the videos, a farmer, with a huge smile on his face, was seen sitting calmly on the side of the canal, watching the water as it finally reached his village. Praising Prime Minister Modi for his exemplary work and efforts that he made to complete this project, he said, “Modi hai to mumkin hai,” which means “If Modi is here, it is possible”.

As the waters reached its tail-end, Narmada waters reached 750 KM from Narmada Dam, which marks the longest distance in a man-made canal. SSNNL Chairman JP Gupta was quoted by the Indian Express saying, “All the civil work and engineering work of the 350-kilometre KBC is complete, and we have been testing the canal since the last week by releasing water into it. The water is expected to reach Mod Kuba, the tail end of the KBC, in the early hours of Thursday.”

Notably, the areas in Saurashtra and north Gujarat have already received Narmada waters via Saurashtra Branch Canal and sub-branch canals network along with the canal network in north Gujarat. Gupta further added, “There were many challenges in completing this canal. There is a fall as the canal offtakes and enters the Rann of Kutch. Then, we have to lift water again to channel it further. In fact, a section of the KBC is 16 metres above the ground level, which is as high as a six-storey building.”

SSNL executive engineer for the KBC Vraj Pandya informed that three pumping stations had been set up at different locals in the KBC to lift water 56 metres so that it reached the tail-end.

Notably, there is a 60,000 KM long network of canals in this project. Not only the technical and engineering challenges, but the project also faced some issues of land acquisition and compensation that were overcome in recent years. Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a 214 KM section of KBC in 2017 and released water into the Tappar Dam near Anjar. There was a 24 KM gap between the rest of the project due to land acquisition issues that were later cleared in 2021.

From Mod Kuba, the Narmada waters will escape into the Mod Kuba river.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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