Total rainfall and wet days in Assam’s Golaghat district have decreased, however heavy rainfall days have elevated

Rainfall in North East India has modified colors: Rainfall deficit has been on all-time excessive, however uncommon floods have gotten extra frequent. The Golaghat district of Assam, by way of which the Doyang river flows to affix the Brahmaputra, has nevertheless not witnessed a traditional monsoon within the final 30 years.

Whereas the general rainfall and wet days within the district have decreased, heavy rainfall days have elevated. These developments haven’t been seen wherever else within the state.

“Summers and winters have develop into hotter within the final 5 years,” mentioned 39-year-old Sanjiv Chettri, a resident of Bohikhowa village of the district.

“Earlier, the winters got here earlier. They’re now delayed. The monsoon rains have additionally shifted from June-July to August-September,” mentioned Kulbahadur Chettri, Sanjiv’s father.

He added that floods that often occurred in late September now happen a lot earlier. “This area would get three waves of floods and which might be predictable earlier. However recently, that has not been attainable,” mentioned Chettri.

A fourth wave of floods in 2020 destroyed plenty of rice crops. The change in rainfall patterns could be evidenced by the change within the number of rice grown within the space.

Aijun rice, which is sown in June-July, can’t be grown now as these months get poor rainfall now. Cultivating rice has additionally decreased as a result of the sand content material within the silt introduced in by the river has elevated. One other conventional selection, Ahu, has additionally been changed by the Boro selection as a result of the previous requires frequent weeding.

Diversion of rivers retains residents on their toes: They maintain transferring from one place to a different.

When 300 homes had been washed away within the 1998 floods in Hapekhati village of the district, folks needed to journey and settle in six completely different villages. Round 7,000 folks misplaced their farm lands in 2020 floods within the Mohura area.

Anil Sahu, an area resident, blamed the Doyang hydro-electric mission for the floods.

“We can’t put money into long-term settlement or livelihood due to the frequent and unpredictable flooding. We can’t take up natural farming, goat and cattle rearing,” mentioned Sanjiv Chettri.

The story of Haldibari village

The Brahmaputra flows round 20 kilometres away from Haldibari village of Golaghat district, at a secure distance from the fury of floods. But, residents of the village have been shedding their land.

“The river erodes the banks and destroys lands of the Kaziranga nationwide park. So the forest division comes after our land,” mentioned 27-year-old Ranjit Karmakar, whose 7.5 bigha land near the nationwide park was taken by the forest division. The promised compensation has not been given to him to date, he claimed.

Karmakar and his household labored within the tea estates for 4 generations, however have began farming on their very own due to the poor wages. He owns solely two bighas of land adjoining to his village the place he grows rice. The water to domesticate rice comes from a small spring from the Karbi Anglong hills, however the spring is in a poor state.

“Rainfall has decreased within the area and this has affected the water within the spring,” mentioned 55-year-old Bohagi Ganju, one other rice farmer whose 28 bighas of land close to the nationwide park was additionally taken away by the forest division. The impression of the general rainfall lower within the district is much extra seen in areas which might be distant from the rivers.

“Now we’re depending on the mountain spring water for rising rice within the three bighas we have now right here. However it should dry up in a couple of years,” she added. Ganju identified that the rice productiveness of the area has gone down by half lately due to the decreased rainfall and decreased spring water.

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