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25 May 2018

Rain snaps Dooars road

The diversion along NH31C near Grassmore tea estate in Nagrakata that was washed away on Thursday. Picture by Biplab Basak

TT, Jalpaiguri: A sudden spell of rain lashed Jalpaiguri town and the Dooars on Thursday morning, washing away a temporary diversion on a key highway in the Dooars.
Traffic has come to halt on NH-31C near Nagrakata in the Dooars after the diversion over a stream crumbled.
This has snapped the link between Siliguri and Banarhat, which is beyond Nagrakata. Vehicles are now having to take a detour along NH-31D and NH-31 (via Mainaguri and Dhupguri) and have to cover 100km extra to get to central and eastern Dooars.
"There was heavy rainfall since early morning. It has led to rise in water levels of rivers and streams and has washes away the diversion over a stream at Nagrakata along the highway. Several other areas got waterlogged and a Sishu Siksha Kendra has been damaged in the same block. Rise in water levels at couple of other rivulets has affected some culverts," said Saiyad N, the sub-divisional officer of Malbazar.
The block administration has sent relief materials in affected areas and the SDO said that the damaged building of the SSK would be repaired soon.
The diversion, sources said, was made on Balukhola, a stream flowing near the Grassmore tea estate.
"Incessant rain since Thursday early morning has damaged the diversion. That is why vehicular movement has stopped on the stretch. We have engaged workers to restore the road connectivity," said Ashish Dhar, the executive engineer of Gairkata sub-division of PWD's NH division.
The diversion has been built as the state PWD has taken the task to widen the highway. The old bridge that was there on the stream has been dismantled and construction of a new and wider bridge is in progress at the site.
In Jalpaiguri town, the rainfall led to water logging in many localities.
Sources at the Regional Met Office here said it has rained 192.08mm in the town in the 24 hourstill 8am on Thursday.
"Due to lack of proper drainage system, residents here have to face inconveniences. The civic body should immediately take necessary steps to improve the drainage or else, people will counter more problems during the monsoon months," said Pinaki Sengupta, a Congress councillor.
Sandip Mahato, the member, chairman-in-council (PWD) of the Trinamul-run civic body, said they have started cleaning the drains.

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