New Delhi: Following the devastating floods in Jammu and Kashmir, a study has been initiated to assess the causes behind the unprecedented deluge amid possibility of diverting the Jhelum river around Srinagar to prevent such catastrophe in the future.
The study has been initiated by the Central Water Commission (CWC) after Chief Minister Omar Abdullah wrote to the Prime Minister's Office, requesting it to find out the reasons for the massive floods and means of prevention.
A team of experts are expected to visit Kashmir for the study and would be submitting the report to the government by the end of this month.
Last month, almost the entire Kashmir Valley was submerged in flood waters with levels rising up to even 12 feet at places after Jhelum breached along with the main flood channel due to sudden water surge.
"The focus of the study is to look into what happened in the floods and how to prevent such disasters of this scale in the future. As part of the study, we would also analyse the proposal to channel the Jhelum river such that it would bypass Srinagar," a CWC official said.
The diverted water would reach the river at a different place to protect the city from floods, the official added.
According to authorities, the proposal to divert Jhelum was mooted a few years ago by the Jammu and Kashmir government. But, it could not progress as there was little follow-up with regard to the techno-economic details.
However, the recent floods in the state has revived the proposal.
When contacted, CWC Chairman AB Pandey said the report of the in-depth study would be submitted by end of this month to the government.
Jhelum has been revered as the lifeline of Kashmir Valley, but it has in the last month revealed its most horrific face, unseen by generations, as it ravaged a large part of Srinagar city.
Thousands of Kashmiri families depend on Jhelum, which originates from a natural spring in South Kashmir's Verinag town, for their livelihood. The Pandit community worships it as the "mother river" and it was once considered the calmest river in the state.