The opposition Congress party in Gujarat has demanded the formation of a special investigation team (SIT) to ascertain the causes of the flood-like situation that occurred in parts of Bharuch district after a substantial release of water into the Narmada river earlier this week.
Additionally, the Congress party called on the state's BJP government to announce a special compensation package for residents affected by the floods. The flooding resulted in extensive damage to homes, businesses, farms, and livestock owners, according to a party statement.
The Congress had previously alleged that excess water from the Sardar Sarovar Dam was released into the river abruptly on September 17, rather than gradually over several days, as an attempt to please Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his birthday. The ruling BJP denied these claims, explaining that a sudden surge in water levels in the dam, located near Ekta Nagar, forced authorities to release 18 lakh cusecs of water downstream within 36 hours.
A Congress delegation, led by deputy leader of the state Congress legislative party Shailesh Parmar and state unit working president Himmatsinh Patel, visited several flood-affected villages on Wednesday, witnessing significant property and agriculture damage.
Parmar called on the Gujarat government to conduct an immediate survey to assess flood-related losses and swiftly announce a special compensation package for affected individuals. Given the extent of the damage, he also suggested the immediate distribution of cash aid.
The Congress party further demanded the establishment of an SIT led by a sitting or retired high court judge to investigate the causes of the flooding, which they describe as a man-made calamity.
Meanwhile, BJP MLA of Ankleshwar in Bharuch, Ishwarsinh Patel, faced criticism from local residents during his visit to Borbhatha village in Ankleshwar taluka. Villagers questioned why they were not given advance warning about the water release and alleged that authorities had not taken sufficient measures to reduce water levels in their area.