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Controversy Greets AICC Man At Khuga Even After 28 Yrs Curse Still On

LAMKA, Oct 19: Amid controversies centering around Khuga Multipurpose Project, a representative of the AICC yester-day conducted on-the-spot inspection only to see for himself that all is still not well even after more than twenty-eight years of construction, despite the attempts being made for the inauguration.

Luzinho Falerio, the Congress Party‘s Manipur in-charge was greeted, immediately on his arrival, with a flawless briefing of an IFC official who openly revealed that there was nothing much to talk about as far as the power-house is concerned, and sought to over- look the components as something that solely depend on surplus (water) resources.

Sixty percent of the dam’s water resources are meant for drinking water while the remaining 40 percent for irrigation, the official said while explaining that the intended 1.5 megawatt of power to be generated was meant to be realized only on monsoon, the season that usually sees surplus resources.

Until then everything seemed to unfold perfectly, as the Government had anticipated, but the event took a U-turn the moment Luzinho Falerio began to move towards the dam’s gate No. 3 from the IFCD makeshift as requested by the official who briefed him, to open the gate and see for himself that it works.

Some JAC members of Khuga Dam who have managed their way to the guest immediately handed over a memorandum and presented a shawl with an assertion that ‘˜the local population is against inauguration of the dam until and unless all the components (purposes) of the dam were fulfilled (realized).’

Falerio, who appeared to be already aware of the JAC, tried to calm them down with the assurance that, ‘˜all pending bills has to be paid.’

As the JAC members reiterated their stand of completing the dam’s component before the inauguration, he began enquiring bit-by-bit only to expose the bugs besieging the project, as the accompanying officials passed the blame to one another.

When the AICC representative enquired about reservoirs which the JAC alleged was still empty, PHE Minister responded, ‘˜our supply (power) is very low now, we need at least 8 hours of power, now we have only 3 available, so we would like to request our honorable Minister to connect this Singngat line so that’¦’

By then, the Power Minister who was just standing adjacent to the PHE Minister shot back, ‘˜we have a separate line for which we asked the water supply department to deposit the required amount, they have not submitted so we could not complete.

Without giving money how can we start?’

Sensing the situation, Faleiro quipped, ‘˜it is just like the left hand giving to the right and vice-versa’ as he moved on to irrigation.

The IFC Minister immediately contested the JAC claim of the canal not functioning even for a kilometer.

‘˜Let us go and see the progress of the work instead of arguing here,’ he said but when the JAC pointed to a photograph of the canal which they have attached in their memorandum, he suggested, ‘˜we are calling them at the Chief Minister‘s office tomorrow, let us discuss together there.’

Upon Faleiro further enquiring on how many people would be benefited by the dam, the argument over the canal again picked up with the concern Minister claiming that he himself had visited the site last year and saw water being provided upto 14 kms.

The JAC denied this and alleged that it was not the case now.

When one of them asked about the western canal, the Minister said, ‘˜upto 6.5’ only to get a response to complete it all.

As the JAC and the Government Minister were apparently at loggerheads, the AICC representative invited the JAC for talks at Imphal and proceeded to personally open the radial gate.

He had a short glimpse of the water gushing down spillway and headed back to Imphal with no more stops.

Just as he entered his car he responded to the query of reporters with, ‘˜I saw the water flowing, I don’t know whether they are of any benefit to the people or not.’

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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