Saturday, March 20, 2010

Rambling on recent events of Arunachal

Government takes INR 300 crore loan to pay its' employees arrear

On March 11, Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu, in a harried press conference at his official residence, announced with much fanfare that in order to keep his promise to it's employee to pay the balance 15th month arrears by March 2010; the Arunachal Pradesh Government has taken an interest free loan of Rs. 300 crore from Center payable in 20 years.

Well, may be with that move the government was able to provide a 'band-aid' solution to keep it's employees' happy but how do the government plan to pay the monthly salary of 80,000 odd employees in future when it says it does not have it's own resources? Also how do the government plan to repay the interest free loan amount of Rs. 300 Crores? Doesn't government creating liabilities for us? Should we always look upto the Centre with 'begging bowls' instead of thinking ways to create our own resources?

Anti-Dam equals Anti-Arunachal

During the same press conference, Chief Minister dubbed those protesting against dams in Arunachal as an anti-Arunachal. Oh my! with that statement Mr. Khandu stirred the 'hornet's nest'. Plethora of condemnation poured in right from ACR to those protesting against dams against his statement terming - his statement tries to curb the 'freedom of expression and freedom of right to live' and asked him to withdraw the statement. Of which the CM responded by saying that he was 'misquoted'. He assured that he is against any forceful displacement of population to materialize coming up of hydro-projects. Besides, Mr. Khandu stated that majority of the awarded hydro-power projects are RoR (Run-of the-River) scheme projects with no or negligible submergence.

There comes my question, though the same has been put forward by Bamang Tago, ACR Chairman as well. Well CM Sir, would you care to quantify how much submergence is called submergence or is negligible submergence or no submergence at all?

Considering the general layout of any hydro-electric power plant, I assume the hydropower plant requires a pondage for availability of water for generation and for creation of head. So, does RoR scheme Hydro Projects does not require pondage (in other words dams)?

While we are on the topic of dams in Arunachal, let me put some more words on it. Right from small to mega hydro projects, the state government has so far awarded about 100 projects to developers' with around 34000 MW of installed capacity. I wonder if such huge amount of hydro-potential needs to be tapped right now. The government says that it will earn revenue for state from sell of this power. But the question is, whom the state government envisage to sell this power to when it is said that owing to constraint in laying of transmission line in the 'chicken-neck corridor', there is constraint of evacuation of power to other beneficiary states out of North-East. It is said that the present capacity to evacuate power from the existing transmission line is only about 6000 MW. So, is it wise on our Governments part to award hydro-projects right and left without thinking of how to evacuate it? Why don't the government consider tapering tapping of hydro power potential of the state? Atleast it would give some time till the transmission utility company PGCIL overcome the present constraint of evacuating only about 6000 MW of power. And by the time may be people would also understand the merit and demerit of having hydro-power plants better.

AAPSU demands renaming of RGU to Arunachal University

On 18th, AAPSU staged dharna infront of Assembly demanding renaming of Rajiv Gandhi University back to Arunachal University. Though, I too agree that we should have our university named indigenously but, the question is where were the students' body when Arunachal University was re-christened Rajiv Gandhi University in the first place? Had they protested then and there, this situation would not have arrived. On the lighter note, would the government be bold enough to disgrace Gandhi dynasty by scrapping the Gandhi name from University when it has just got sanctioned loan amount of Rs. 300 Crore to pay to it's employees'?

NES demands creation of Department of Nyishi affairs in line of Department of Tirap and Changlang with annual budgetary allocation of Rs. 100 Crores.

I respect the concern of 'Elites' towards socio-economic development of their community and surely the government should look into the matter to develop the rural areas. But then wouldn't this demand sow seed for division of state on the basis of different communities of the state on the ground of development or non-development of their areas? What I feel is, it is not the quantum of amount sanctioned for particular area development but it is how the amount is utilized by the implementing agencies, which is much of siphoned off before it reaches to actual beneficiary. What do you say?



Post a Comment