Tuesday February 07, 2023

Climate-change triggered floods: Integrated system of bulwarks in Chitral termed inevitable

By Our Correspondent
November 09, 2022

CHITRAL: An integrated system of bulwarks across the valley of Chitral has become necessary to protect it against the floods in Chitral River and the streams of different villages which are becoming frequent due to climate change.

The relentless torrential rains during the last summer continuing for more than three weeks without a respite have proved the villages with bulwark structures remained totally unaffected by the floods.

Three villages Buzund, Kargin and Chuinj in Upper Chitral and Kalash valley Rumbur in Lower Chitral were known for their vulnerability to floods in the past but the repeated onslaughts of devastating floods were effectively deterred by the protection works.

The dwellers of the villages described the miseries of the past during the flooding seasons which had rendered hundreds of families homeless and increased their poverty by washing away their agricultural lands and fruit orchards as well as grazing pastures.

Erected by Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH) in 2020, the bulwarks in the four villages have reportedly saved more than three hundred homes, large tracts of lands and infrastructures of roads, bridges and irrigation channels from being swept away.

The elders of the villages including Hedayat Khan, Yousuf Aziz, Haji Hussain Shah, Qurban Kalash explained the utility of the bulwarks against floods and proposed similar structures to save the vulnerable villages and infrastructures.

They proposed the erection of similar structures across the valley to ensure protection of village lands and create in the targeted people a feeling of security.