JAMMU, Jan 23: Minister for PHE, Irrigation & Flood Control Sham Lal Choudhary today said the department is taking various path-breaking initiatives to provide potable drinking to inaccessible areas of the State and special focus is being given to supplying water for irrigation to every agricultural field.
Winding up the discussion on demand of grants for PHE, Irrigation & Flood Control Department, the Minister said the mandate of the department is to develop policies, programmes and practices for effective use of the State’s water resources in an equitable and sustainable manner.
Under National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP), the Government is focusing on ensuring drinking water security by adopting holistic approach through conjunctive use of surface, ground and rain water harvesting, the Minister said, adding that 1,353 Piped Water Supply Schemes are presently going on in the State under the project.
He further informed that 93 schemes are being executed in the State under LIC loan assistance while as under NABARD loan assistance, new water supply projects costing Rs 323.92 crore have been formulated and are in the process of sponsoring for NABARD funding.
The Minister said that Draft State Water Policy has been put in the public domain for feedback. “The comprehensive study of morphology of Jhelum and Tawi has been started while as for devising management and control measures to tackle floods, Early Warning System would be placed in Jhelum, Tawi and Chenab”, he added.
He informed that proposals under consideration for improving water supply in Srinagar include construction of WSS Harwan at an estimated cost of Rs 195 crore and construction of another WSS Alusteng to be executed at an estimated cost of Rs 145 crore.
Listing out the steps taken for improving water supply in Jammu city, the Minister informed that Detailed Project Report (DPR) for “Augmentation of water supply to Jammu city from river Chenab Phase-I” amounting to Rs 624.52 crore has been forwarded to the Department of Economic Affairs, GoI for funding under JICA. The DPR under Smart City, for drilling of six new tube wells, creation of Capacitor Banks at pumping stations and improvement of water supply at JDA colony Roop Nagar, EWS Colony Roop Nagar, Umer Colony, Malik Market and Guru Teg Bahadur Nagar has also been sent to the concerned Union Ministry for approval, he added.
The Minister informed that Water Supply Schemes at Bhaderwah, Sunderbani, Anantnag and Sopore have been completed while as Samba, Udhampur, Kathua and Doda would be completed under UIDSSMT soon.
“The Government has established 22 district level laboratories at various district headquarters with 76 sub-divisional labs while as two State level laboratories at twin cities of Srinagar and Jammu and would be completed soon”, the Minister said, adding “the department has taken up 31 Protection/anti-erosion works for execution under Flood Management Programme at the cost of Rs 1,018.63 crore out of which an amount of Rs 236.08 crore have been utilized”.
The Minister informed that the Government has issued regularization orders to 516 Daily Rated Workers, whose names were cleared by the Empowered Committee. The cases of adhoc/contractual employees are being examined as per Special Provisions Act, 2010, he added.
He further informed that the Government has succeeded in bringing 17,495 casual laborers in Jammu and 1,679 casual laborers in Kashmir under Biometric attendance system. During the last two years, the Government has also settled 160 SRO-43 cases, he added.
Later, the House passed the grants of Public Health Engineering, Irrigation and Flood Control Departments for the year 2017-18 moved by the Minister, amounting to Rs. 194903.75 lakh and 163537.57 lakh respectively with voice vote.