The two approaches have been discussed in brief in the following paragraphs.
Run of the Mill approach
This has been repeatedly happening for last 50-60 years in India. Govts in Bihar and Centre and their Agencies will come out with a plan for another dam/ barrage, make a lot of money through contractors and have an annual programme of Aerial Surveys of Flood affected areas, organise relief camps directly and through NGOs and earn lots of money through them and keep the NGOs under control and in good humour. Very soon you will hear the proposals from the Govt and their Engineers, contractors. Congress Party has mastered this technique of Dam/ barrage building and "the Bandar baant" which is a part of the programme since the beginning. All other parties have just learnt and exceeded the Congress limits. Therefore, it is futile to talk about the goodness or badness of this party or that. Organised local action groups need to take care of the monitoring part during the operationalisation and execution of the programme.
If anything more than this is desired like intervention in the planning stage itself the initiative will have to be taken in the same way as Medha Patkar or Dr. B.D. Sharma do and get disliked by the vested interest groups incl. the Govts. Nothing less.
Fresh Down To Earth Approach
Kosi does not bring only flood but it also brings highly fertile soil in the area year after year. According to an informal estimate the soil there is capable of feeding 1/3 rd of the World population. Somebody should examine/study this fact.
The new approach should be based on "No Dam/ No Barrage" (or only few of them if at all required) and an assumption that Floods will be coming every year on time. The Research on Materials development like Boat for every house and Jacket for floating humans & New Building Materials and the networks of fly over with sufficient strength and stability for Rail-Road and wireless communications which remain intact even during the severe flood need to be initiated in IITs and the Cement, Steel, Electronic and Power industries etc.
One point, never to be forgotten, is that we are culturally different from the developed countries in our culture and attitude towards Maintenance & Repair and Public Property. The second point is that I have imagined that corruption will be there in equal measure because it will be the same people handling the ffairs either way but loss of life and Hanging sword on the people's Head may be less.
The above suggestions do not provide details but they are examples of some aspects. The invitees can be any retired Engineer of the Central and State Govts. and Central Water Commission for the Dam/ Barrage category.
For the second category you can invite Prof. Jayant Bandopadhyaya of IIM Kolkatta (He has studied Rivers in Nepal and Kosi belt, Prof G.D. Agrawal (formerly of IITK and CPCB, Sri Dinesh Mishra, Medha Patkar, Dr. B.D. Sharma and the Water Man Sri Rajendra Singh. More people can be included in future provided we fix the provisional Agenda.
I also suggest that the Workshop/ Consultation should be exclusive and not mixed with other activities/ meeting etc. I expect the members to give very definite opinion on the issues involved and suggest names and e-mail ids of such experts who can be invited.
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