PALAMPUR: How the companied involved in executing hydel projects in the state in general and Palampur in particular by caring a hoot and flouting the agreement for the proper disposal of debris, clay and stones. It became evident as the residents of HIMUDA colony Holta and adjoining localities were being compelled to take muddy and contaminated water for the last three days.
In Dhauladhar, ranges falling between Dharmshala and Baijnath have half a dozen small hydel projects being executed by the private companies, mostly from Andhra Pradesh. Since these companies had strong political connection with UPA leaders in Andhra Pradesh and New Delhi, therefore, these companies were playing havoc with nature and flouting the terms and conditions of MOU signed with the state government. Unfortunately there was no government agency in the field who could ask these companies for proper implementation of the MOU. Though the state forest department had been made the nodal agency by the state government to keep check on these companies. But in past two years the forest department had badly failed to deliver the goods resulting in total disaster in the region.
Mr. A. S. Baniyal , DFO Palampur while talking to My Himachal news admitted that these companies had resorted to environmental degradation in the region and indulged in illict felling of trees also yet no action had been initiated against the default companies in past two years. Even no body knew how much amount these companies had deposited for the rehabilitation measures and catchments area development plan.
These companies have not only caused loss to environment but also damaged two dozen drinking water supply schemes in the region. The water sources of all the major drinking water supply schemes had been covered with debris and clay thrown by these companies. Mr. L.R. Chaudhry Executive Engineer Palampur said, he had served number of notices on these companies but they had continued the dumping of debris in the water sources. He said if timely action was not taken, people would not get drinking water in the rainy season.
He said the overhead tanks of major water supply schemes had filled with mud that could chock the supply of water any time. He said unless and until the dumping of debris was stopped it was not possible for the IPH department to supply clean water to the residents.
Dr. Rajinder Kistwaria, executive member of the HIMUDA Welfare Society had expressed serious concern over this situation as the hydel Project being executed upstream were dumping its debris in gross violation of agreement and showing total disrespect for environment and human lives. He demanded that storage tanks be got cleaned by the companies executing this project. If the authorities concerned do not awake from slumber there were chances of spread of epidemic.