Representatives of Nongrim Hills and Nongshilliang dorbar shnongs led by former Nongthymmai MLA, Jemino Mawthoh today called on PHE Minister, Renikton L Tongkhar to apprise him of the water crisis that exited for the past six months.
Speaking to reporters Rangbah Shnong of Nongrim Hills, Bantylli L Nary said that Tongkhar told the delegation that a spot inspection will be conducted at the Umkhen Water Supply Scheme in the first week of January.
Informing that the residents of the two localities have been receiving water for decades altogether from the project namely the NNP schemes which continue till date and a small portion from the GSWSS, he said, “The supply of water in the last six months dropped considerably and in the last two months, it has almost become negligible with no supply for a week during the rainy days that has put the residents of the two localities in great difficulty.”
Stating that most of the consumers of the PHED are regular water taxpayers, he said it is a grave injustice to the consumers in not getting regular supply despite payment of dues since they had to shell out extra expenditure to purchase water every alternate day or twice a week.
“Although there is an increase in the number of households and population in these two localities, the additional water coming from the GSWSS in the year 2005-06 was thought to be a great blessing for the residents and consumers. However, the water supply from GSWSS has also become very irregular to meet the requirements of the people,” he said adding that the regular breakdown of the Water pipes coming from the Umkhen source is a cause of concern and needs to be addressed on a priority basis.
Informing that earlier, there used to be a dam which serves as storage of the accumulated water at Umkhen source, but at present, the dam is non-existent, except for scattered concrete and remnants, he said, “The onsite inspection taken by the Dorbar Shnongs recently at Umkhen source revealed that there are two supply pipes, six inches for NPP and another four inches meant for Laitumkhrah area. But to our utter dismay, we were informed that the pipeline going to Laitumkhrah was left unattended for the past 6 months and no repair work was done. Due to temporary amalgamation of the two pipelines, the quantity of water supply has lessened considerably.”
To add to the woes of the consumers, leakages of pipes is noticed in the entire stretch right from the source to the reservoir and supply tank in the two localities, he said, adding, although repairing was done, the same does not last for even two months because of sub-standard materials being used.
“We hope that timely action will be taken by the PHE not only for the renovation or repairing but for complete up gradation of the entire water supply chain with the construction of a proper dam at the Umkhen source. We are certain, that that the source can suffice the requirement of water by enhancing the supply to a much greater volume since this source has the potential and quantity to increase,” he said.
Meanwhile, the two dorbar shnongs have also requested the PHE department to declare the land in and around the Umkhen source as a “catchment area” to put a stop to the ongoing mining and quarrying.
The dorbar shnongs expressed fear that if sand mining and quarrying goes on unchecked it will have a toll on the supply of water and lead to collapse and abandoning of this important source.