STAFF REPORTER/DIPR IMPHAL, 1st Mar: Formally kicking off the ‘inauguration fortnight’ on Thursday in connection with the celebration of the first anniversary of the BJP-led coalition government in Manipur, chief minister N Biren Singh has reiterated that top priority will be accorded towards ensuring that all citizens have access to basic needs.
Speaking at the joint launch of three water supply schemes taken up under Integrated Water Supply Project for Imphal Planning Area (Phase-1) at Khuman Lampak water supply scheme campus, the chief minister announced that plans for launching development projects and definite timeframe for dedicating them to the people will be made public within short notice.
While iterating that the new government has firm resolve to complete pending projects at the earliest possible so that the state masses could reap the fruits of development, Biren observed that one of the reasons for Manipur lagging behind other states on the developmental chart is due to unwarranted delays in completing important projects.
Unlike the past governments during which public assets remaining unutilised used to be the hallmark, the BJP-led coalition government will leave no stone unturned in commissioning public utility projects, he said.
Compared to Thoubal and Dolaithabi projects taking decades for nearing the completion mark, the BJP national office in New Delhi has been completed within a year of commencement of construction works, the CM said to drive home the point that all projects need to be completed without wasting time and resources.
He also conveyed that in-spite of the state PHED facing manpower shortage there will be no compromise when it comes to executing development projects along with assuring to explore all options for filling up the vacant posts in the department.
Hailing decision of an employees’ body to defer the planned cease work agitation in preference for holding talks with the government in connection with their demand for implementation of the 7th Pay Commission recommendation, Biren confided that the government is consulting all concerned to find a solution to the issue.
With regard to seeking public opinion through the social media on shortening the duration of Yaoshang festivities, he conveyed that in-spite of some commenting mockingly, 95 per cent of the respondents expressed strong desire for putting an end to the antique tradition of five-day revelry.
Another positive development towards reducing public inconveniences, the CM said, was the announcement of UKAL to ban use of the public address system during celebration of sylvan deities (Lai Haraoba).
Expressing elation over increasing number of common people and civil societies taking pro-active role and assisting law enforcement agencies in the battle against drug menace, Biren said that the government is working on a policy to provide alternative source of livelihood to poppy planters.
Reflecting on inauguration of the three water supply schemes namely Chinga, Minuthong (Kangla) and Khuman Lampak, the Chief Minister said that the BJP-led government would celebrate March 1 to 15 as the ‘Inauguration Fortnight’ to commemorate its first anniversary.
Informing that around 100 schemes/projects would be launched or inaugurated during these two weeks, he disclosed that the projects include many power stations, schools, hostels, water supply schemes, sports complexes and health centres.
Biren further informed that to meet the drinking water requirement in the state, the Centre has agreed in principle to take up water supply schemes at sub-divisional levels under Minority and Other Backward Classes (MOBC).
Stating that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of providing potable water to all households of the country by 2022 is a big challenge to states like Manipur due to topographical factors, he said that the present government would however leave no stone unturned in accomplishing the task.
As the functional president, PHE minister Losii Dikho said that water is the basic necessity of life and PHED is responsible for providing drinking water to the masses.
Expressing gratitude to the Chief Minister for his special concerns about the Department, Dikho expressed hope that necessary staff of the Department would be recruited soon.
Stating that the present Government is performing well under the leadership of N Biren, the Minister said that the State had witnessed lots of positive changes since the coming of the new Government.
Among others, advisor to chief minister Rajat Sethi, Secretary (PHE) Nidhi Kesarwani and PHED chief engineer H Sunil Singh also attended the function as guests of honour.
Briefly speaking on the occasion, Nidhi Kesarwani informed that out of the daily requirement of 120 million litres per-day (MLD) of potable water in the state, 19 functional water supply schemes are providing 86 MLD.
Speaker of Manipur Legislative Assembly, Y Khemchand was also present at the inauguration ceremony of Chinga Water Supply Scheme. The Scheme, which was constructed at an estimated cost of Rs 370.09 lakh, has capacity of supplying 1.14 MLD.
Having the same capacity, the Minuthong Scheme was taken up at a cost of Rs 331.13 lakh. On the other hand, the Khuman Lampak Water Supply Scheme, which was constructed at an estimated cost of Rs 747.27 lakh, has a capacity of supplying 4.45 MLD.
The Chinga scheme will provide potable water to around 8400 people of Thokchom Leikai, Pishum Hao Ground, Chongtham Leikai, Chirom Leikai, Super Market, Chinga Makha Liwa Road, Irom Leikai, parts of Maisnam Leikai and Mayengbam Leikai, Top Leikai, Sougrakpam Leikai and Thongam Leikai.
The Minuthong Water Supply Scheme will serve around same number of people of Babupara, Khoyathong, DM College Campus and parts of Thangal Bazar while the Khuman Lampak Scheme will provide water to around 33,630 people of Khuman Lampak Sports Complex, Ragailong Kabui Khun, Deulahland, Nagaram, Lairikyengbam Makha Leikai and parts of Chingmeirong East.
To meet the ever increasing demand of potable water, Public Health Engineering Department (PHED) took up Integrated Water Supply Scheme for Imphal Planning Area (Phase-1) with an estimated cost of Rs 89.7519 crore.
The said amount was sanctioned under the then transition phase of Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewable Mission (JnNURM) during February 2014. Under the project, reconstruction of nine Water Treatment Plants namely Koirengei, Khuman Lampak, Minuthong (Kangla), Porompat, Chinga, Canchipur, Singda, Kangchup, Kangchup Extension and one Zonal Reservoir at Sangakpham were taken up.
The three projects inaugurated on Thursday were among the nine projects.